The U.S. Navy has awarded Austal USA a US$21.5 million cost-plus order to perform planned post-delivery services on the Independence-variant Littoral Combat Ship USS Charleston (LCS 18).
Austal USA’s west coast operations team will perform the dry docking in Seattle, Washington, with the services scheduled to be completed by September 2020.
Announcing the award, Austal Chief Executive Officer David Singleton said the contract was another demonstration of Austal USA’s new ‘ops normal’ for their growing support business.
“While it is not our intention to announce every support contract of this type and size, we certainly value and appreciate Austal USA’s growing involvement in dry-docking activities for the LCS and the long term significance and importance of the work to both the U.S. Navy and Austal USA, given the size of the LCS fleet by 2024,” Singleton said.
As the number of Austal-built ships in the U.S. Navy fleet continues to grow, the company is expanding its support operations in San Diego and Singapore to meet the U.S. Navy’s current and planned deployments of Littoral Combat Ships and Expeditionary Fast Transport ships.
The USS Charleston (LCS 18) is a 127-meter small surface combatant, outfitted with mission packages (made up of mission systems and support equipment) that deploy manned and unmanned vehicles and sensors in support of mine countermeasures, anti-submarine warfare or surface warfare missions. The aluminum construction and unique trimaran hull provide both class-leading speed and capability, while the aviation deck is the largest of any U.S. Navy ship other than aircraft carriers.
Austal is contracted to deliver 19 Littoral Combat Ships for the U.S. Navy, with 10 delivered since 2010, 5 currently under construction and 4 scheduled for construction. USS Charleston was commissioned in March 2019.