Early Xmas: Big Virginia Contracts for GDEB, NGC
“Virginia Block III: The Revised Bow” explains the program history and cost targets for the USA’s future Virginia Class nuclear submarine fleet, while detailing the new “six shooter” bow design.
Now Christmas has come early for General Dynamics Electric Boat Corporation in Groton, CT, thanks to a $14.011 billion fixed-price incentive multi-year contract. Working with their partner Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding, the firm will be the lead contractor for 8 new Virginia Class submarines, as the Navy orders SSN 784 – SSN 791 between FY 2009 – FY 2013. The USS North Dakota [SSN 784] will be the first fielded example of the new Virginia Class Block III configuration, which has been redesigned in ways that improve its flexibility while reducing its costs…
The multi-year contract allows Electric Boat and its teammate, Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding, to continue building one ship per year in 2009 and 2010 under their combined production model, followed by a early shift to one boat per year ship from each yard (2 ships per year total) from 2011 – 2013. SSN 791, the 8th and final boat scheduled under this contract, has an expected delivery date of 2019.
The new contract immediately provides $2.4 billion to fund construction of SSN-784, plus advance procurement of long-lead components for SSN-785. The contract will also save money by providing funding to purchase materials, parts and components for multiple boats at one time (SSN-785 through SSN-791, as yet unnamed); create more confidence in workforce training and hiring; and improve economies of scale. Additional cost-reduction design changes (known as Design For Affordability) will also be funded under the contract, in order to hep the program meet its financial goals.
Work will be performed at various sites throughout the United States (45%); Northrop Grumman’s Newport News, VA (25%), Quonset Point, RI (15%); and Groton, CT (15%), and is expected to be complete by February 2020. This contract was not competitively procured by the Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington, DC (N00024-09-C-2104).