US Coast Guard Moves Forward on New Icebreakers

Posted by Eric Haun
Thursday, January 21, 2016
USCG photo by Rob Rothway

The U.S. Coast Guard released a proposed acquisition timeline and requirements for two new heavy U.S. icebreakers that could cost $1 billion each and said it would meet with interested companies during an industry day in March.

 
Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Paul Zukunft told an event hosted by the Center for Strategic and International Studies that notice was intended to get information from companies about their ability to build and develop icebreakers that would be in use for 40 years and to explore options such as leasing.
 
In a federal notice, the Coast Guard spelled out key notional requirements for the new ships, including the ability to break through ice with a thickness of at least 6 feet at a continuous speed of three knots, and the ability to break a single-pass channel through ice to a width of at least 83 feet.
 
It said the ships would also have to operate for at least 80 days without replenishment of food or fuel, and have a minimum range of 21,500 nautical miles at 12 kts in ice free waters.
 
The Coast Guard said it had not finalized an acquisition strategy, but it hoped to release a draft request for proposals in the first quarter of fiscal 2017, and award a contract in the last quarter of fiscal 2018 or fiscal 2019.
 
Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc, which built the newest U.S. icebreaker and delivered it in 1999, said it was "absolutely interested" in building icebreakers for the U.S. Coast Guard.
 
General Dynamics Corp, the other large U.S. military shipbuilder, has also expressed interest in the program, as have other shipyards, according to the Coast Guard.
 
President Barack Obama in September called for the United States to accelerate plans to buy at least one new heavy icebreaker for the U.S. Arctic by 2020, instead of the previous goal of 2022. Each ship is likely to cost around $1 billion.
 
Melting sea ice in the region has increased traffic and could open the Arctic to more shipping, mining and oil drilling, increasing the potential for ships to be stuck in ice that still covers the region for much of the year.
 
Zukunft said the United States also needs icebreakers to resupply national security infrastructure in Antarctica.
 
He gave no details about funding for icebreakers, and said the Coast Guard's fiscal 2017 budget request was still being finalized with the White House Office of Management and Budget.
 
Zukunft said companies could look at licensing existing designs built in other countries to speed up the process.
 
Senator Lisa Murkowski, an Alaska Republican, said she was optimistic that 2017 budget request, due to be released on Feb. 9, would include initial funding for icebreakers.
 
The United States has only two operational icebreakers, plus another heavy icebreaker that is not in commission. Russia has 42 icebreakers with another 12 ships planned or under construction, and China has two, Zukunft said.
 
The Coast Guard has warned that as the Arctic opens to tourism and oil drilling, the United States risks not having enough capacity to carry out search and rescue and oil spill response missions.
 
Zukunft said a recent study concluded that the Coast Guard needed three heavy and three medium-sized icebreakers, but the current floor was at least two heavy icebreakers so one vessel could free the other if it became trapped in ice. It would also be too costly to buy and build just one icebreaker, he said.
 
 
(Reporting by Andrea Shalal; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe, Meredith Mazzilli and Diane Craft)

Technology

Scorpene Submarine Data Leak: Setback to Indian Navy

India has began multiple investigations to determine the extent of damage caused by the reported massive leak of secret data detailing the combat and stealth capabilities

NOAA Engineers a Better Current Sensor for Mariners

Navigating into seaports is now safer and more efficient for mariners thanks to improved NOAA technology that ships rely on to give them information about currents.

SMM 2016: World Premieres from around the Globe

Some 50,000 trade visitors from the whole of the world are expected in Hamburg for the start of SMM in less than two weeks. And once again, it is fully booked – with a total of more than 2,

Shipbuilding

MV WERFTEN, Foreship Sign Design Agreements

MV WERFTEN signed a letter of intent with the engineering company Foreship in Stralsund today. The agreement includes parts of the basic design as well as design,

Zumaia Offshore Acqires MPP Workboat Aitana B

In April 2016 Zumaia Offshore, S.L., leading workboat owner and operator based in the Basque Country, took delivery of the Cummins-powered MPP workboat “Aitana

How Rapid is the Fleet Growth?

During July 2016, the containership fleet reached a landmark 20 million TEU in terms of aggregate capacity, says Clarksons Research.   To many it only seems

Finance

NParks, Keppel in S$2.08 mln Partnership for Restoring Singapore Forest Wetlands

The National Parks Board (NParks) and Keppel Corporation today unveiled plans for a partnership to restore the freshwater forest wetland ecosystem historically

Skaugen Goes to Red Again

Norwegian Marine Transportation Service Company I.M. Skaugen SE reported interim losses but cautiously positive and expecting a gradual recovery of trading opportunities

Kongsberg Performs Well in Q2

Norwegian defence and marine technology company Kongsberg Gruppen's second quarter 2016 (Q2) financial results shows sales performance broadly in line with recent trends,

News

MV WERFTEN, Foreship Sign Design Agreements

MV WERFTEN signed a letter of intent with the engineering company Foreship in Stralsund today. The agreement includes parts of the basic design as well as design,

NParks, Keppel in S$2.08 mln Partnership for Restoring Singapore Forest Wetlands

The National Parks Board (NParks) and Keppel Corporation today unveiled plans for a partnership to restore the freshwater forest wetland ecosystem historically

Zumaia Offshore Acqires MPP Workboat Aitana B

In April 2016 Zumaia Offshore, S.L., leading workboat owner and operator based in the Basque Country, took delivery of the Cummins-powered MPP workboat “Aitana

Coast Guard

El Faro Captain Ordered Crew to Abandon Ship before Sinking

The captain of the doomed El Faro cargo ship sounded an alarm for his crew to abandon the vessel shortly before it sank last fall in a hurricane near the Bahamas, killing all 33 onboard, the U.

Navy Discovers Malaysian Tanker

Indonesia's navy has found a tanker carrying almost US$400,000 worth of diesel that was taken by its own crew last week due to a commercial dispute, says a report in AFP.

Philippines: Sea Dispute Won't Shift Ties with China, U.S.

The Philippines' territorial dispute with China over the South China Sea has not caused Manila to rebalance diplomatic ties with either its ally, the United States,

Vessels

C-Job Designs Flettner Freighter for Switijnk

The Dutch shipping company family Switijnk has contracted C-Job Naval Architects to develop a Rotor Sail-equipped design to meet their specific loading and sailing profile.

Damen Trading Sale hits 500th Vessel

30 years and 500 vessels later, Damen Trading is just getting started. Damen Trading’s story begins in 1986, with Damen Shipyards Group responding to growing market demand for used vessels.

Matson Orders Two ConRo Ships from NASSCO

Matson Navigation Company, Inc., a subsidiary of container shipper Matson, Inc., has signed a contract with U.S. shipbuilder General Dynamics NASSCO to build two

Government Update

White House: Iranian Ships' Actions in Gulf Increase Risk of Miscalculation

Actions by Iranian vessels in several encounters with U.S. warships in the Gulf this week are cause for concern and increase risks of miscalculation, the White House said on Friday.

Cochin Port Gets a Little 'Breathing Space'

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs of India, chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has given its approval for waiver of penal interest on Government

Iran Vessels Make 'High Speed Intercept' of US Ship

Four of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) vessels "harassed" a U.S. warship on Tuesday near the Strait of Hormuz, a U.S. defense official said, amid

 
 
Maritime Standards Navigation Offshore Oil Pipelines Port Authority Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | 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: 0.2397 sec (4 req/sec)