TOULON, France, Jan. 16 (UPI) -- French shipbuilders DCNS and STX France have delivered a third Mistral class force projection and command ship to the French defense procurement agency DGA.
The amphibious assault vessel Dixmude is 653 feet long, 105 feet wide and cruises at a speed of nearly 19 knots. It carries 16 heavy lift-helicopters or 35 light helicopters, as many as 1,400 soldiers, four landing barges and nearly 60 vehicles, including main battle tanks, for expeditionary forces.
It has a range of nearly 6,000 nautical miles when traveling at 18 knots and more than 10,000 nautical miles at 15 knots.
DCNS said the vessel – the third Mistral class amphibious assault ship for the French navy -- was delivered Saturday, three months ahead of schedule.
The first, the BPC Mistral was delivered in 2006. The Tonnerre was delivered the following year.
DCNS was responsible for integrating combat systems on the ship, while STX built the platform and propulsion system.