General Dynamics National Steel and Shipbuilding Corporation (NASSCO) has been awarded contract modifications to support the construction of the US Navy’s three ships.

This contract modifications are for the procurement of long-lead-time material to build the sixth Expeditionary Sea Base (ESB) ship and seventh and eighth John Lewis-class fleet oilers (T-AO).

The estimated value of the contract is $600m, with $100m for ESB 8 and $500m for the T-AO 211 and 212 vessels.

Construction work is expected to commence next year and will continue into 2027. It will generate and sustain employment opportunities at NASSCO’s shipyard in San Diego, California.

General Dynamics NASSCO president Dave Carver said: “NASSCO shipbuilders are honoured to build T-AO 211, T-AO 212 and ESB 8.

“The NASSCO team is excited to work with our navy partners to ensure the success of both historic programmes which are critical in supporting the navy’s forward presence.”

In July 2016, NASSCO was awarded $640m contract to design and construct the US Navy’s fleet of six John Lewis-class (T-AO 205) replenishment oilers.

Delivery of the first vessel USNS John Lewis (T-AO 205) is expected to take place later this year.

Other vessels, including the future USNS Earl Warren (T-AO 207), Harvey Milk (T-AO 206) and Robert F Kennedy (T-AO 208), are under different stages of construction.

The contract for design and construction of ESBs was awarded to NASSCO in 2011.

Initially, the contract involved two ships under the Mobile Landing Platform (MLP) programme, which was evolved and renamed as ESBs.

The US Navy has recently christened the sixth ship USNS John L Canley, while the seventh vessel Robert E Simanek (ESB 7) is under construction.