Austal USA has been awarded a contract by the United States Navy for up to seven Auxiliary General Ocean Surveillance Ship (T-AGOS) 25 Class surveillance ships, with a total value of up to $3.2bn.

Austal Limited announced today, 19 May, that its American subsidiary Austal USA has secured a $114m contract for the detail design of the T-AGOS 25 Class for the United States Navy, with options for detail design and construction of up to seven vessels, bringing the cumulative value of the contract to $3.2bn. Work will be completed on the detail design by November 2024, and then continue through June 2034 if all options are exercised, according to a US Department of Defense release.

The T-AGOS 25 is a 110m steel ‘small waterplane area twin hull’ (SWATH) vessel, that the United States Military Sealift Command operates to aid in the anti-submarine warfare mission of the commanders of the Atlantic and Pacific Fleets. These vessels are equipped with Surveillance Towed-Array Sensor System (SURTASS) equipment that helps in gathering underwater acoustical data, enabling the ship to serve as a platform for both passive and active anti-submarine acoustic surveillance.

The T-AGOS is a unique auxiliary naval platform, according to Paddy Gregg, CEO of Austal Limited, that plays “an integral role in supporting the navy’s anti-submarine warfare mission.“

Austal USA has announced its partnership with L3Harris Technologies, Noise Control Engineering, TAI Engineering, and Thoma-Sea Marine Constructors for the TAGOS-25 programme. The company will serve as the prime contractor for the project, which will be carried out at its new steel shipbuilding facility in Mobile, Alabama.

Austal USA uses of lean manufacturing principles, modular construction, and moving assembly lines has brought the company a series of US Naval projects that are currently underway, among them Independence-variant Littoral Combat Ships, with Austal having delivered 17 out of the 19 in the order so far, and Spearhead-class Expeditionary Fast Transports, of which Austal has delivered 13 out of 16, including the USNS Apalachicola, EPF-13, the largest uncrewed capable vessel in the U.S. Navy.