January 19, 2000 -- SAN DIEGO, CA -- National Steel and Shipbuilding Company (NASSCO), a General Dynamics company (NYSE: GD), has delivered the USNS RED CLOUD (T-AKR 313) to the U.S. Navy. The RED CLOUD is the fourth new construction ship built by NASSCO under the U.S. Navy's Strategic Sealift Program.

The RED CLOUD was completed under target cost and delivered to the Navy three months ahead of schedule. The ship was delivered under NASSCO's single Integrated Trial concept, a process that helps reduce costs and accelerate delivery.

A total of seven new construction ships and three ship conversions have been awarded to NASSCO under the Strategic Sealift Program. All ships are being named for U.S. Army Medal of Honor recipients. The RED CLOUD is named after U.S. Army Corporal Mitchell Red Cloud, Jr., a posthumous recipient of the Medal of Honor for his heroic actions in Korea in 1950.

The sealift new construction ships are large, medium-speed, roll-on, roll-off (RO/RO) ships (LMSRs). The ships are assigned to the U.S. Navy's Military Sealift Command, carrying prepositioned U.S. Army equipment, vehicles and supplies near potential areas of conflict around the world.

The cargo of the strategic sealift vessels includes armored personnel carriers, tanks, tractor-trailers and high-mobility military vehicles. The ships also provide stores for surge sealift support of remote military actions. Their multi-use capabilities make these cargo ships among the most flexible ever built. The USNS RED CLOUD is 950 feet in length and contains 390,000 square feet of cargo carrying space.

A total of 20 LMSRs, both conversions and newbuildings, are planned to be delivered by U.S. shipyards by the year 2002 under the Strategic Sealift Program being managed by the Naval Sea Systems Command.

NASSCO, a General Dynamics' company, is the only West Coast shipyard capable of building and repairing large, ocean-going vessels. The shipyard employs approximately 3,500 at its San Diego facilities. More information on NASSCO can be obtained from the company's Web site at

General Dynamics ( of Falls Church, Virginia, has leading market positions in shipbuilding and marine systems, land and amphibious combat systems, information systems, and business aviation. The corporation employs approximately 44,000 people and has annualized sales of approximately $10 billion.