The prime has been tapped to construct three additional vessels for the US Navy.
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General Dynamics NASSCO has secured a US$1.4 billion (AU$2 billion) US Navy contract modification to construct a sixth Expeditionary Sea Base ship (ESB 8) and two additional John Lewis Class fleet oilers (T-AO 211 and 212).
This builds on the $600 million (AU$867.5 million) previously secured for the procurement of long-lead time materials for the three ships.
This latest contract modification includes an option to procure an additional oiler, T-AO 213, taking the total value to US$2.7 billion (AU$3.9 billion).
“NASSCO is committed to working together with the Navy to deliver these much-needed ships to the fleet,” Dave Carver, president of General Dynamics NASSCO, said.
“As partners with the Navy, we remain dedicated to ensuring the success of both of these programs to help enhance and expand the Navy’s forward presence and warfighting capabilities while providing sustained growth for our workforce.”
General Dynamics is scheduled to commence construction in the third quarter of 2023 and into 2027.
NASSCO was initially awarded a contract to design and build the first two ships in 2011 as part of the newly created Mobile Landing Platform program, USNS Montford Point and USNS John Glenn.
The program was then expanded to add the USS Lewis B. Puller (ESB 3), USS Hershel “Woody” Williams (ESB 4), USS Miguel Keith (ESB 5), the future USS John L. Canley (ESB 6) and the future USS Robert E. Simanek (ESB 7), configured as ESBs.
ESB ships are billed as highly flexible platforms designed to support multiple maritime-based missions, including air mine counter measures, special operations forces, and limited crisis response.
The 784-foot ship has a 52,000 square-foot flight deck, capable of supporting MH-53, MH-60, MV-22 tilt-rotor, and H1 aircraft operations.
Meanwhile, NASSCO won a contract to design and build the first six ships in the next generation of John Lewis Class oilers in 2016.
These vessels are designed to transfer fuel to US Navy ships operating at sea, with the 742-feet built with a full load displacement of 49,850 tonnes.
The vessels, which are capable of carrying 157,000 barrels of oil and dry cargo, can also provide aviation capability at speeds of up to 20 knots.
The US Navy accepted the first ship, USNS John Lewis (T-AO 205), in July 2022.
NASSCO is currently constructing the USNS Harvey Milk (T-AO 206), USNS Earl Warren (T-AO 207), and USNS Robert F. Kennedy (T-AO 208).