American Ship Building Awarded Navy Contract For Up To Six Ocean Surveillance Ships

The American Ship Building Company Announced recently that the U.S. Navy has awarded the company a contract for the construction of up to six Ocean Surveillance Ships. The eventual contract value for construction of these vessels, which are designated T-AGOS 23- Class ships, is approximately $300 million.

American Ship chairman George M. Steinbrenner said design and procurement work will begin immediately at The American Ship Building Company's Tampa Shipyards Division on the initial phase of the contract, which calls for delivery of the first ship in 1994.

"This is very exciting news for both the company and the Tampa Bay area," Mr. Steinbrenner said.

"Not only does this breathe new life into Tampa Ship;, but it will also have a tremendous economic impact on the Tampa Bay area at a time when this area sorely needs such an infusion." The company expects that more than 500 new workers will be needed to supplement its present labor force at the Tampa Shipyards facilities.

Hiring of engineers, designers and planners will begin immediately, with production trades added by early 1992. "We are deeply appreciative of the U.S. Navy's confidence in the ability of American Ship to perform on this contract," added Mr.


Continuation of the contract, which presently calls for completion of the six ships by 1997, will be at the discretion of Congress as it approves the U.S. Navy ship construction program each year. The Navy is considering plans to construct approximately 15 to 20 of these vessels.

Alan B. Nierenberg, president and chief operating officer of The American Ship Building Company, said the award of this contract establishes a solid backlog of work that will serve to stabilize the future of Tampa Shipyards. "We can now begin to look to complementary commercial marine repair and new construction work as a supplement to ongoing military activity. This contract definitely establishes Tampa Ship as a part of the nation's military industrial base. This is an exciting time for American Ship and for the Tampa Bay industrial community," he added.

Mr. Nierenberg said the contract will allow the company to substantially increase its manpower and capabilities for the next five to six years. Seventy-five percent of construction will take place at Tampa Shipyards' Westshore facility, where crews will assemble large pre-outfitted modular sections of the ships. These modules will then be barged to Tampa Shipyards' Hookers Point facility for final assembly and ship testing.

The T-AGOS ships will be manned and operated by the Military Sealift Command, under contract from the Naval Sea Systems Command. The T-AGOS 23-Class vessels will be larger than existing ships now under construction by the U.S. Navy for ocean surveillance.

The ships will be built with a SWATH (Small Waterplane Area Twin-Hull) configuration that provides a more stable platform for accomplishing oceanographic missions in heavier seas. The T-AGOS 23-Class represents the second phase of ocean survey vessels being built for the Naval Sea Systems Command.

Mr. Nierenberg said the benefit of such a large and stable contract will allow American Ship to be more competitive in bidding for commercial and offshore ship repair work, while giving it added strength in the ongoing competitive battle for additional U.S. Navy ship contracts.

The T-AGOS 23-Class ocean surveillance ships have a length of 281 feet 6 inches, beam of 95 feet 9 inches and design draft of 26 feet. Depth, main deck at amidships is 55 feet 4 inches; displacement at design draft is 5,368 long tons.

Propulsion for the T-AGOS 23- Class vessels is provided by two diesel-electric machinery units rated @ 2,500 Hp each, with two 15 ft.

fixed-pitch propellers.

The ships are designed to carry a crew of eight officers, four enlisted personnel and 33 civilians.

For free literature giving full information on American Ship, CIRCLE 49 ON READER SERVICE CARD

Other stories from April 1991 issue


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