U.S. Navy awards contracts to Lockheed, Austal for 4 more ships

marinelink.com
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
File Photo: LCS hulls 4 & 6 alongside the pier at Austal Shipyard..

The U.S. Navy has awarded contracts worth nearly $1.4 billion to buy four more Littoral Combat Ships from Lockheed Martin Corp and Australia's Austal Ltd, the U.S. Defense Department said on Monday.

Lockheed won a contract valued at $699 million to build two more of its steel monohull-design ships, while Austal won a contract worth $684 million to build two more of its aluminum trimaran design, the Pentagon said in its daily digest of major weapons contracts.

Lockheed welcomed the contract, which covers the seventh and eighth ships it is building under a 10-ship contract awarded in December 2010, and said it was awaiting news of how the Pentagon planned to proceed with the LCS program.

Lockheed and Australia's Austal each build a different model of the LCS-class ships, which are designed to carry interchangeable equipment packages for mine-hunting, surface warfare or anti-submarine missions. General Dynamics Corp is a major supplier for the Austal version of the ship.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel announced last month that he wants to stop building the current configuration of ships after 32 ships, instead of building all 52 that were planned, and focus instead on ships with more firepower and protection.

The Navy is in the middle of executing separate 10-ship block buys with both Lockheed and Austal, which will bring the total number of LCS ships to 24.

Lockheed and Austal are waiting for details on how the Navy plans to procure the next eight ships that bring the total to 32 before shifting gear toward a more survivable ship.

Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Jonathan Greenert told reporters on Monday that he would set up task force to look at the issue in coming days, and hoped to get preliminary recommendations from the group by July, in time to help inform the Navy's fiscal 2016 budget planning process.

He said the task force would look at a variety of options, including modifying the current LCS ships, including possibly installing some mission equipment permanently on the ships, using a foreign design, or starting with a whole new design.

But new design would be costly and take a long time to execute, Greenert said. "It would be quite a challenge," he said, adding the Navy would have to use some "fairly mature" technologies to get the ships built in time.

Joe North, vice president of littoral ship systems at Lockheed, said that his company would be able to offer the best pricing to the Navy if it ordered the next eight ships as part of a block buy, rather than ordering them one year at a time.

North said he remained convinced that the LCS ships were the most cost effective ships in the Navy, and said Lockheed was standing by to learn about what additional capabilities the Navy wanted to add to the class in future years.

He said Lockheed continued to explore possible foreign arms sales of the steel monohull design it is building for the Navy.

The Pentagon said work on the next two Lockheed LCS ships would be completed by August 2018. The next two Austal ships would be completed by June 2018, it said.

 

By Andrea Shalal

Maritime Reporter September 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

People & Company News

Coast Guard Foundation to Honor USCG in Miami

The Coast Guard Foundation, a nonprofit organization committed to the education and welfare of all Coast Guard members and their families, announced today that

Maritime Broadband Opens Office in Greece

Maritime Broadband has expanded its worldwide footprint by opening an office, Maritime Broadband Hellas, in Athens, Greece. The new office addresses the growing

Renewable Energy: Schottel Tidal Turbines Ready For Use

In the last months Schottel  successfully tested its hydrokinetic turbines in Strangford Lough, Northern Ireland. The full-scale tests included 260 operating hours under realistic conditions.

Contracts

Total CEO Killed in Moscow Runway Accident

Private jet collided with snow plow during takeoff; Total's CEO a defender of Moscow policies. Insiders Boisseau and Pouyanne long seen as potential successors.

Offshore Oil: Lamprell Completes Caspian Sea Drilling Unit

UAE-based Lamprell said that it completed construction of the second Caspian Sea jackup drilling rig, Mercury, for service in the Caspian Sea.   "I am delighted

Salamander Energy Updates on SONA Transaction

Salamander Energy said it has submitted a draft shareholder circular to the Financial Conduct Authority in relation to previously stated plans to divest of an interest in the Greater Bualuang Area.

Shipbuilding

Catamaran Passenger Ferries Delivered in Angola

Incat Crowther announced the delivery a pair of 30m catamaran passenger ferries, Macôco and Panguila, to Instituto Marítimo e Portuário de Angola. The vessels, built by Astilleros Armon in Spain,

Offshore Oil: Lamprell Completes Caspian Sea Drilling Unit

UAE-based Lamprell said that it completed construction of the second Caspian Sea jackup drilling rig, Mercury, for service in the Caspian Sea.   "I am delighted

TRIYARDS Buys into Aluminium Shipbuilding Expertise

TRIYARDS Holdings Limited, an offshore vessel fabrication and engineering solutions provider to the oil and gas (O&G) industry, has added new capabilities, products

Navy

WWII Wrecks Found off North Carolina

German U-boat 576 and freighter Bluefields found within 240 yards A team of researchers led by NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries have discovered two

US & ROK Navies to Participate in Exercise Clear Horizon

The U.S. and Republic of Korea (ROK) navies will participate in Exercise Clear Horizon, October 20-24, in waters south of the Korean peninsula. Clear Horizon

Mount Whitney Departs Batumi, Georgia

The U.S. 6th Fleet command and control ship USS Mount Whitney (LCC 20) departed Batumi, Georgia, Oct. 18 after completing a successful port visit. While in Batumi,

Finance

Weak Oil Threatens US Export of LNG

Plunging global oil prices may turn hopes for cheap liquefied natural gas supplies from the United States into a costly disappointment for Asian buyers who have

Continership Alliance Expands to US Trades

The CKYHE Alliance (COSCO, "K" LINE, Yang Ming, Hanjin Shipping, and Evergreen Line) has announced they will expand their cooperation scope to U.S. Trades and CKYHE

Total CEO Killed in Moscow Runway Accident

Private jet collided with snow plow during takeoff; Total's CEO a defender of Moscow policies. Insiders Boisseau and Pouyanne long seen as potential successors.

Maritime Security

USCG Reopens Port Allen Post Hurricane Ana

The Coast Guard Captain of the Port reopened Port Allen in Kauai Monday morning after surveying crews deemed it  safe for transit. The maritime public is advised

Key to Somalia's Recovery

Piracy, terrorism and criminal activities originating in Somalia can only be addressed by creating a climate of security, engagement and empowerment that will encourage home grown businesses,

US & ROK Navies to Participate in Exercise Clear Horizon

The U.S. and Republic of Korea (ROK) navies will participate in Exercise Clear Horizon, October 20-24, in waters south of the Korean peninsula. Clear Horizon

Eye on the Navy

US & ROK Navies to Participate in Exercise Clear Horizon

The U.S. and Republic of Korea (ROK) navies will participate in Exercise Clear Horizon, October 20-24, in waters south of the Korean peninsula. Clear Horizon

Mount Whitney Departs Batumi, Georgia

The U.S. 6th Fleet command and control ship USS Mount Whitney (LCC 20) departed Batumi, Georgia, Oct. 18 after completing a successful port visit. While in Batumi,

USS Constitution Not to Set Sail Until 2018

The crew of USS Constitution embarked on their final Boston Harbor underway demonstration aboard Old Ironsides this year, Oct. 17. Constitution set out into

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Maritime Standards Offshore Oil Pipelines Pod Propulsion Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Sonar
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.3909 sec (3 req/sec)