DDG 51

The US Navy has awarded a $618m contract modification to Huntington Ingalls Industries’ (HII) Ingalls Shipbuilding division to support construction of the Arleigh Burke-class (DDG 51) guided missile destroyer DDG 123.

The DDG 123 vessel is the fourth in a series of five destroyers. HII received this five-ship contract in June 2013 to support the DDG 51 programme of the US Navy.

The recent award follows $55m in advance procurement for DDG 123 and brings the full amount of the contract to $673m.

“Maintaining the same shipbuilding teams from ship to ship is paying dividends to our learning curve.”

Under the multi-year procurement award, Ingalls assumed the responsibility to construct vessels by procuring bulk material and moving the skilled workforce from ship to ship.

Ingalls DDG 51 programme manager George Nungesser said: "Maintaining the same shipbuilding teams from ship to ship is paying dividends to our learning curve.

"The US Navy sailors manning this future DDG deserve the best quality, and our shipbuilders will provide that in a way that is the most cost-effective."

The multi-mission Arleigh Burke-class destroyers are capable of a variety of operations, from peacetime presence and crisis management, to sea control and power projection.

DDGs, which are capable of simultaneously fighting air, surface and subsurface threats using a range of weapons, are designed to support the current maritime defence needs.

To date, Ingalls has built and delivered 28 Arleigh Burke-class destroyers.

Christened in May, John Finn (DDG 113) is expected to undergo sea trials this year, while Paul Ignatius (DDG 117) is expected to be launched next year.

The keel laying for Delbert D Black (DDG 119) is scheduled this year.

Ingalls christened the US Navy’s latest Arleigh Burke-class destroyer Ralph Johnson (DDG 114) last week.

Image: An Arleigh Burke-class vessel at sea. Photo: courtesy of PH3 James Collins.