National Steel and Shipbuilding Company
(NASSCO), announced that the U.S. Navy has exercised an option to build a fourth ship for the T-AKE program, a new class of combat logistics force ships, at a contract value of $288 million.
The company was awarded a $709 million contract in October 2001 for the design and construction of the first two ships in the T-AKE program. The Navy exercised its option for the third ship, to be built at a value of $290 million, in July 2002. With exercise of the fourth ship option, the total value of the program is $1.3 billion. NASSCO's T-AKE contract has options exercisable by the Navy for eight additional ships over the next five years, for a potential contract value of approximately $3.7 billion. Functional design work on the T-AKE 1, which has been designated the Lewis and Clark class, is approximately 90 percent complete. Construction of the first ship will begin in September with delivery scheduled for 2005.
"The T-AKE is the first new Navy combat logistics force ship design in almost 20 years and is the first to combine lower-cost commercial design rules and specifications with high-performance, proven international marine technologies such as integrated electric-drive propulsion," said Richard Vortmann, president of NASSCO. "The T-AKE will benefit directly from NASSCO's ongoing commercial shipbuilding programs and its long history of building auxiliary and support ships for the Navy," he added.