Austal USA, which maintains a substantial manufacturing facility in Mobile, has been awarded a new six-year contract by the U.S. Navy.
For the past several years Austal has been constructing littoral combat ships on the behalf of the U.S. military. Based on a trimaran seaframe, these ships operate in the shallow waters close to shore. Former Secretary of the Navy Gordon R. England said the concept behind the ship is to “create a small, fast, maneuverable and relatively inexpensive family of ships.”
Now, after being awarded their contract in 2010, Austal has constructed numerous naval ships and employed thousands of Alabama workers.
The new extension will commission funds for the construction of Austal’s 15th Alabama built ship. This is in addition to the five ships that are already under construction.
“When Alabama’s businesses succeed, Alabamians succeed,” said Gov. Ivey. “Austal USA is a 21st Century, technology-driven, employer which provides good wages and good opportunities for its employees. Austal is critical to our state’s high-tech military and aerospace manufacturing sector. By adding to its ship order, the U.S. Navy is signaling its confidence in Austal’s products and the employees who build it. Alabama has a skilled workforce that is known for producing high-quality goods. I look forward to more announcements like this one from Austral, as well as other companies that do business in Alabama, because of our trained workforce and our positive business environment.”
The name of the new ship has yet to be announced. However, those currently under construction are the USS Omaha, USS Manchester, USS Tulsa, USS Charleston, USS Cincinnati, USS Kansas City, USS Oakland, and USS Mobile.