General Dynamics NASSCO said May 23 that it has been awarded a $736 million addition to an existing contract for construction of a ninth ship in the U.S. Navy’s John Lewis-class fleet oiler program.
The exercised option comes in addition to the earlier awarded eight ships, bringing the total contract value to about $5.5 billion for construction of nine ships.
“NASSCO is proud of our ongoing dedication to deliver these ships to the fleet,” General Dynamics NASSCO President Dave Carver said in a statement.
Construction of the ninth oiler is scheduled to begin in the third quarter of 2025.
In 2016, the Navy awarded NASSCO with a contract to design and build the first six ships in the next generation of fleet oilers, the John Lewis-class. Designed to transfer fuel to U.S. Navy carrier strike group ships operating at sea, the 742-feet vessels have a full load displacement of 49,850 tons, with the capacity to carry 157,000 barrels of oil, a significant dry cargo capacity, aviation capability and up to a speed of 20 knots.
The first ship, the USNS John Lewis, was delivered to the Navy last year. The first vessel, the USNS John Lewis, was delivered in 2022. Currently under construction are the USNS Harvey Milk, the USNS Earl Warren, the USNS Robert F. Kennedy, the USNS Lucy Stone and the USNS Sojourner Truth.
General Dynamics NASSCO, which has facilities in San Diego; Bremerton, Wash. and elsewhere, specializes in the design and construction of Navy and commercial ships and is a major provider of repair services for the U.S. Navy.