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Pascagoula, Miss., January 21, 2015 VT Halter Marine, Inc. (VT Halter Marine), a company of Vision Technologies Systems, Inc. (VT Systems), proudly held the laying of the keel ceremony today at the Pascagoula facility for the first of two Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG)-powered, combination Container Roll-On/Roll-Off (ConRo) ships for its long-time customer, Crowley Maritime Corporation (Crowley). Traditionally, the keel laying marks the ceremonial beginning of the ship’s construction as it forms the backbone of a ship and is the first part of the vessel to be constructed.

The new Commitment-Class ship has been designed to maximize the carriage of 102-inch-wide containers, which offer the most cubic cargo capacity in the trade. The ship measures 219.5m long, 32.3m wide (beam), with a deep draft of 10m, and an approximate deadweight capacity of 26,500 metric tonnes. Cargo capacity will be approximately 2,400 TEUs (20-foot-equivalent-units), with additional space for nearly 400 vehicles. The main propulsion and auxiliary engines will be fueled with environmentally-friendly LNG, setting a new standard for responsible shipping. The vessels will be built at the Pascagoula facility, with deliveries scheduled for mid and late 2017. The ship design is provided by Wartsila Ship Design in conjunction with Crowley subsidiary Jensen Maritime, a leading Seattle-based naval architecture and marine engineering firm. 

“This keel laying is a major milestone event in the construction schedule for the Crowley Commitment-Class Program.  We are pleased that construction is underway for this very significant vessel. We are most grateful to our valued customer, Crowley, for their continued confidence in VT Halter Marine.” ~ Bill SKINNER, Chief Executive Officer, VT Halter Marine.

VT Halter Marine is the marine operations of VT Systems. Based inPascagoula,Miss., it is a leader in the design and construction of medium-sized ships in the United States. VT Halter Marine designs, builds and repairs a wide variety of ocean-going vessels such as patrol vessels, oil recovery vessels, oil cargo vessels, ferries, logistic support vessels and survey vessels. Please visit

VT Systems is an engineering company providing integrated solutions to the commercial and government markets in the aerospace, electronics, land systems and marine sectors. VT Systems’ innovative solutions, products and services include aircraft maintenance, repair and modification; software solutions in training and simulation; satellite-based IP communications technology; network solutions that integrate data, voice and video; rugged computers and computer peripheral equipment; specialized truck bodies and trailers; weapons and munitions systems; road construction equipment; and ship design and shipbuilding. Headquartered in Alexandria,Va., VT Systems operates globally and is a wholly owned subsidiary of ST Engineering. Please visit


Media contacts:      

Leslie Rose
Corporate Communications
VT Halter Marine
Phone:  (1) 228 696 6860
Fax:       (1) 228 696 6899

Edward Szeto
Manager, Corporate Communications
VT Systems
Phone:  (1) 703 739 2610
Fax:       (1) 703 739 2611