July 1, 2004
$250 million Deepwater cutter contract for Northrop Grumman
Under the U.S. Coast Guard's Deepwater program, Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC) has been awarded approximately $250 million in production and long lead material contracts for the first Maritime Security Cutter, Large (WMSL). Formerly named the National Security Cutter, this is a highly capable 421 ft high-endurance cutter.
The contracts, awarded to the company's Ship Systems sector, bring the lead ship of the most advanced cutter class in the Coast Guard's fleet one step closer to delivery. The contracts should yield significant continued production savings across three different cutter classes by sharing the same design team, with common systems, logistics, and training.
The Ship Systems sector leads the construction effort as a major partner in Integrated Coast Guard Systems, a joint venture of Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin. The ship will be built at Northrop Grumman's Pascagoula, Miss., shipyard. Construction will begin in September 2004 with the keel laying to follow in April 2005. The anticipated delivery date for the lead ship is the second quarter of 2007.
"This cutter will significantly enhance the maritime security capabilities and efforts of the U.S. Coast Guard," said Dr. Philip A. Dur, president, Northrop Grumman Ship Systems. "Our shipbuilders are experienced in building complex and sophisticated surface combatants, which this class of cutters exemplifies. We are proud to be on the Deepwater team, and ready to deliver these ships on an accelerated schedule if that becomes necessary and feasible."
The WMSL will be a 421-foot vessel with a 4,112-ton displacement at full load, when delivered, and will be powered by a twin-screw combined diesel and gas turbine power propulsion plant. It is designed to cruise at a maximum speed of 28 knots. The cutter will include an aft launch and recovery area for two rigid hull inflatable boats, a flight deck to accommodate a range of rotary-wing manned and unmanned aircraft and state of the art command and control electronics.
"The National Security Cutter team is well prepared to begin construction on this ship, and to further provide a product built ready and able to fulfill the U.S. Coast Guard's maritime missions," said Judy Wheat, program manager for the National Security Cutter. "Our entire Deepwater team will continue to survey cost savings and will establish a best value analysis for equipment and component standardization to fully understand the life-cycle cost savings associated with this effort."