Deepwater Cutter Achieves Milestone
The U.S. Coast Guard's 140-ft. fast-response cutter has reached a systems
requirements milestone resulting in the ship being one step closer to construction commencement.
The fast-response cutter is being built by Integrated Coast Guard Systems
(ICGS), a joint venture between Northrop Grumman Corporation (NOC)
and Lockheed Martin (LMT)
, under the Integrated Deepwater System Program.
The purpose of the systems requirements review was to present the ship concept to the Coast Guard and to confirm the customer requirements have been sufficiently developed, so the ICGS team can proceed to design development.
The new cutter has been developed to meet post-Sept. 11 mission requirements. The new composite-hulled craft, to be manufactured at Northrop Grumman's Gulfport, Miss., composites center, will have a 40-year hull-life.
The cutter will be interoperable with other Deepwater assets and will operate at 30+ knots, providing exceptional response and reaction capability. Typical missions will include near-shore fisheries patrol, migrant and drug interdiction, barrier patrols and augmenting patrols in areas of concern.
"We are facing very aggressive schedule goals for this program," said Mike Duthu, Northrop Grumman Fast-Response Cutter program manager. "To meet specific homeland security defense needs, the program has been accelerated by nearly 10 years from what was originally proposed at the time of contract award in June 2002. During the execution of each phase, we will have a Northrop Grumman team continually planning, scoping and proposing the next phase to achieve program milestones."
The systems requirements review, held at Northrop Grumman Ship Systems sector's shipyard in New Orleans, included demonstrations on the fast-response cutter's hull, mechanical and electrical design, the Command, Control, Communications and Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) suite and logistics support. ICGS also presented information on the ship's preliminary operational plans as an asset in the Integrated Deepwater System.
As a result of the systems requirements review process, the Fast-Response Cutter program now moves into the preliminary design phase, with the customer review scheduled for this August.
The Integrated Deepwater System is a critical multi-year, multi-billion dollar program to modernize and replace the Coast Guard's aging ships and aircraft, and improve command and control and logistics systems. It is the largest recapitalization effort in the history of the Coast Guard.