The U.S. Coast Guard has awarded General Dynamics Bath Iron Works a $21.4 million contract for the Offshore Patrol Cutter (OPC) program. Bath Iron Works is one of three shipyards chosen from a field of eight competitors to proceed to Phase I design work on this next-generation cutter program.
The Bath Iron Works team includes L-3 Communications (New York, N.Y.) and Navantia, S.A. (Spain), a shipbuilder that Bath Iron Works has collaborated with for more than 30 years.
Bath Iron Works president Fred Harris said the Coast Guard design contract was an important development as the shipyard seeks to expand its customer base and maintain its design and manufacturing workload.
“Our experienced engineering and design team will now focus on developing a preliminary OPC design that meets or exceeds our customer’s requirements,” said Harris. “We will also continue our yard-wide actions to ensure we can build these ships affordably, safely and on – or ahead of – schedule.”
At the end of the 18-month Phase I period, the Coast Guard will select one team to develop Phase II detail design and build the first nine to 11 ships of a planned 25-ship class.
The OPC is a next-generation ship which will replace the Coast Guard’s aging fleet of Medium Endurance Cutters, complementing the current and future fleet and extending the service’s operational capabilities. The OPC will feature increased range and endurance, more powerful weapons, a larger flight deck and improved command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance equipment.
About Bath Iron Works General Dynamics Bath Iron Works is a business unit of General Dynamics (NYSE: GD). Headquartered in Bath, Maine, the shipyard employs approximately 5,250 people. Bath Iron Works designs and builds destroyers for the U.S. Navy, and is currently building two classes, the Arleigh Burke class (DDG 51) and the Zumwalt class (DDG 1000). More information about General Dynamics Bath Iron Works can be found at www.gdbiw.com.
About Navantia, S.A. Navantia, S.A. has a long history of designing and building ships for the Spanish Navy. The Bath Iron Works OPC design is a variant of Navantia’s BAM (Buque de Acción Marítima) offshore patrol vessels built for the Spanish Navy. The BAM is an established, in-service ship purpose built for OPC-like missions in the Spanish Navy. Navantia employs about 5,500 people.
About L-3 Communications L-3 Communications has been supplying maritime communications solutions for more than 40 years. L-3’s C4ISR solutions provide shipbuilder efficiency, crew reduction and streamlined training and logistics due to the commonality of their systems across Coast Guard and U.S. Navy platforms. New York, NY-based L-3 Communications employs about 48,000.