They will also add a third shipyard to the national shipbuilding strategy.
The cost may appear out of line. The total for the 18 ships, C$15.7 billion (about US$11.7 billion) averages US$650M per ship. That is more than the average cost of the contract with options for three USCG Polar Security Cutters ($1.9B for three ships or $633M on average), but the price is not final and it appears it may include extended support.
The C$15.7 billion funding for the 18 large ships in represents early estimates of project budgets including construction, logistics and support, contingency, project management and infrastructure costs. The costs of each ship will be announced following contract negotiations.
Still there is likely to be some criticism.
There is also mention of an intention to also build some smaller vessels,
The Government of Canada will also proceed through a competitive process with the design of a new class of smaller ships, the new Mid-Shore Multi-Mission Ship, which would complement the work of the large fleet in shallow areas and deliver mid-shore science activities.
All in all, good news for the Canadian Coast Guard and an investment in ship building in Canada, assuming it actually happens. Like the US Coast Guard, they have had their problems.
Like most of you I did not make it to the Navy League’s 2019 Sea-Air-Space Exposition, so I have found some YouTube reports that can at least provide some of the information passed along at the event. The descriptions below each video are from the YouTube description.
Day 1 video coverage at the Sea Air Space 2019 exposition. In this video we cover:
– Boeing MQ-25 Stingray aerial refueling drone with Rear Admiral Corey
– Future USVs and XLUUV/Orca programs with Captain Pete Small
– Austal USA new range of medium and large size USVs
– Textron Systems CUSV with surface warfare payload
– ST Engineering range of USVs
Day 2 video coverage at the Sea Air Space 2019 exposition. In this video we cover:
– Raytheon SPY-6 radar
– Raytheon / Kongsberg NSM for USMC
– Northrop Grumman PGK for naval 5 Inch and 155mm guns
– Lockheed Martin Freedom-class lethality and survivability upgrade
– Lockheed Martin FFG(X)
– Navantia / BIW FFG(X)
Day 3 video coverage at the Sea Air Space 2019 exposition. Washington-based naval expert Chris Cavas is our guest speaker for this third and final day at Sea Air Space 2019. Cavas covers the follow topics:
– Bell V-247 Vigilant VTOL tilt-rotor UAV in U.S. Navy configuration
– Austal USA USV concepts
– Austal USA FFG(X) Frigate
– Fincantieri FFG(X) Frigate
– GD Bath Iron Works FFG(X) Frigate
– Lockheed Martin Type 26 CSC
– Lockheed Martin hypervelocity missile
– Mic drop
The Congressional Research Service has updated their report on the Polar Security Cutter Program. This is the first revision since the award of the contract, so there are significant changes, including a section on the selected design found on pages 5-9.
“right now my sense is we enjoy support from the administration, we enjoy bipartisan, bicameral support” in Congress, he said
The first ship is supposed to deliver to the Coast Guard in 2023..The Commandant did not speculate on the future funding profile, saying only that he expected three PSCs operational by 2028. USNI noted,
…buying the second and third ships in FY 2021 and 2023, respectively – would allow for all three to be in the fleet by 2027 or 2028.
Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson also remarked on Freedom of Navigation Operations in the Arctic and the Navy’s intention to operate in the Arctic.
An artist’s rendering of VT Halter Marine’s winning bid for the U.S. Coast Guard Polar Security Cutter. VT Halter Marine image.
US Naval Institute News Service reports that the first Polar Security Cutter (Heavy Icebreaker) contract has been awarded to VT Halter, and it is notably cheaper than initial estimates. Cost is actually not a lot more than for a National Security Cutter. The contract includes options for two additional ships, if all options are exercised total contract would be $1.9B.