General Dynamics’ (GD) wholly owned subsidiary Electric Boat has been awarded a $480.6m contract modification to continue development of the US Navy’s next-generation Columbia-class ballistic-missile submarine.
Under the contract modification, the company will be responsible for providing funding for advance procurement, advance construction and long lead time material for the first Columbia-class (SSBN 826) nuclear submarine.
The US Navy intends to develop and deploy a fleet of 12 new Columbia-class SSBNs, with the construction of the lead sea-based strategic deterrent slated to commence at the end of 2020.
Initially awarded in September last year, the complete contract for the production of 12 vessels has a total potential value of $6.1bn.
GD Electric Boat president Jeffrey S Geiger said: “In close collaboration with the navy and the submarine industrial base, Electric Boat will continue to lead key aspects of the Columbia-class development effort.
“This work includes design, material procurement, construction and operating cost reduction. The entire Columbia-class team is committed to achieving an affordable and effective programme. Our nation’s security depends on it.”
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GD Electric Boat implements its technical strengths and business expertise to effectively manage challenges related to the production of nuclear submarines for the US Navy.
With a current workforce of approximately 16,800 employees, the company operates from three primary locations in Groton and New London in Connecticut, and Quonset Point in Rhode Island.
Designed to replace the US Navy’s existing fleet of Ohio-class vessels, the SSBN 826 development programme will provide the service with strategic deterrent capabilities that will continue until the 2080s.
The delivery of the lead Columbia-class vessel is expected to be carried out in 2027.