WA-based shipbuilder Austal has won a contract worth up to $779 million to construct a Frigate-sized Independence Class Littoral Combat Ship (LCS 28) for the US Navy.
The ship will be constructed at Austal’s shipyard in Alabama, however some subsystems will be produced at the company’s Henderson, WA facility. These will include ride control systems, ride control fins, powerboards and electronic control systems.
“We won this award following a direct competition with the Freedom Class LCS, which says much for our cost efficiency on this program,” said Austal CEO David Singleton.
“Austal’s work on the LCS program at our advanced Module Manufacturing Facility (MMF) has seen efficiency gains of 20 per cent with an ambitious target of 35 per cent set for the end of the build cycle.
“Should we win the $3 billion Offshore Patrol Vessel contract for the Royal Australian Navy, we intend to introduce many of the advanced manufacturing techniques and efficiency gains perfected in the US into our local operations.”
The US Navy is expected to order up to two more LCS vessels in the current US financial year.