Afloat Staging Command Support (PM7)
Our Afloat Staging Command Support (PM7) program consists of four ships previously aligned under Service and Command Support.
Command Ship. USS Mount Whitney functions as a joint task force command ship, serving as a command, control, communications, computer, and intelligence platform for embarked commanders from NATO, naval components and numbered fleets. USS Mount Whitney is operated with a combined crew of civilian mariners and uniformed personnel under the leadership of a Navy captain.
Afloat Forward Staging Base. USS Ponce functions as an interim afloat forward staging base supporting mine countermeasure operations, patrol coastal operations and other missions as directed. USS Ponce was converted to serve as an interim solution to U.S. Central Command's request for a permanent forward-deployed sea base. USS Ponce is a hybrid-crewed vessel with civilian mariners providing navigation, deck, engineering, and galley services and military service members providing mission support.
Expeditionary Sea Base. USNS Lewis B. Puller is the Navy's first purpose-built afloat forward staging base and has a hybrid-manned crew with a combination of military personnel and civilian mariners. USNS Lewis B. Puller is designed to provide dedicated support for air mine countermeasures and special warfare missions and is capable of executing additional missions including counter-piracy, maritime security, and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.
Cable Laying & Repair Ship. USNS Zeus is the Navy's only cable-laying/repair ship and can lay up to 1,000 miles of cable in depths up to 9,000 feet during a single deployment before having to restock its cable supply.