Northrop awarded $129 million cutter contract

Northrop Grumman’s Ship Systems sector has been awarded two contracts worth $129 million to design and deliver a new class of cutters for the US Coast Guard.

Northrop Grumman’s Ship Systems sector has been awarded two Deepwater contracts worth $129 million to design and deliver the US Coast Guard’s first new National Security Cutter (NSC).

The new class of cutters are set to replace the Coast Guard’s ageing fleet of surface vessels.

Integrated Coast Guard Systems (ICGS) awarded the contracts under the Coast Guard’s Integrated Deepwater System Program. ICGS, the prime contractor for the program, is a co-equal partnership of Northrop Grumman Ship Systems and Lockheed Martin Corporation.

The design effort will be conducted at the New Orleans Engineering Center of Excellence, where the NSC’s preliminary and contract design phase was recently completed. Fabrication of the first new NSC is planned to begin in mid-2004, with ship delivery scheduled in 2006.

Deepwater is said to be the largest recapitalisation effort in the Coast Guard’s 200-year history. The Integrated Deepwater System is a critical multi-year program to modernise and replace ageing ships and aircraft, and improve communications, command and control and logistics systems.

‘Now more than ever, the Coast Guard needs a modern force of National Security Cutters to defend our interests against those who would threaten the security of our homeland,’ commented Dr. Philip A. Dur, Northrop Grumman corporate vice president and president of the company’s Ship Systems sector.

‘The US Coast Guard needs new cutters with enhanced capability for all the traditional missions of drug interdiction, maritime law enforcement, and search and rescue operations, as well as the heightened emphasis on homeland security, to push our borders farther offshore,’ added Dr. Dur.