U.S. Navy signs $1-plus-billion contract for giant floating bases with General DynamicsNews
September 03, 2019
FALLS CHURCH, Va. General Dynamics has signed a $1.08 billion contract modification to build two more Expeditionary Sea Base (ESB) ships for the U.S. Navy.
Under the terms of the contract, General Dynamics' National Steel and Shipbuilding Co. (NASSCO) will design and build ESBs 6 and 7 for the Navy by January 2025.
According to officials with Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA), ESBs are modeled after Alaska-class crude oil carriers and feature mobile landing platform capabilities that can handle various Navy helicopter and other rotary aircraft for Special Operations Force (SOF), Airborne Mine Counter Measures (AMCM) and other operations. NAVSEA also notes that these 785-foot ships have a range of 9,500 nautical miles at a sustained speed of 15 knots, weigh approximately 80,000 tons, and use float-on/float-off technology and a reconfigurable mission deck to maximize capability.