U.S. Navy's First Swath Oceanographic Research Ship to be Christened
BALTIMORE, MD, 15-NOV-01 -- Lockheed Martin Naval Electronics and Surveillance Systems (NE&SS) - Marine Systems in Baltimore and Atlantic Marine of Jacksonville, FL announced today that the U.S. Navy's newest and most innovative oceanographic research vessel will be christened November 17 at Atlantic Marine's shipyard in Jacksonville. The christening ceremony will begin at 7:45 a.m. The ship's sponsor is Mrs. Margaret Inouye, wife of the ceremony's principal speaker, Senator Daniel K. Inouye of Hawaii. The ship is named R/V KILO MOANA and has been designated AGOR 26 by the Navy. Kilo Moana means 'oceanographer' in Hawaiian. The keel for AGOR 26 was laid in February of this year. The ship, which is being built for the Navy, will be operated by the University of Hawaii for general-purpose oceanographic research. After the ship is placed in the water at Saturday's christening, construction and outfitting will continue at Atlantic Marine. It will become operational when it is delivered to the Navy in early 2002.
A christening ceremony in the Navy is a significant milestone in the life of a ship. It is the moment when the ship receives a name and emerges as more than an inanimate object. The christening ceremony ties the bond between the ship and the men and women who designed, built, and will sail with her.
The contract value of the ship is $45.3 million.
The innovative design of AGOR 26 is based on the incorporation of small-waterplane-area, twin-hull (SWATH) technology, developed by Lockheed Martin. The SWATH concept utilizes two submerged lower hulls, connected by thin struts to the superstructure, resulting in an extremely stable ride in rough seas. In fact, the ship can conduct research in sea state 6 (12 to 24-foot seas), thereby increasing its on-station availability by 60% as compared to a traditional monohull research vessel.
Due to the SWATH design, AGOR 26 has an 88-foot beam, a size more associated with a ship four times the size. This geometry results in more work space for researchers on board. Thus, AGOR 26 provides researchers with more area to work and more time available to conduct research because of the SWATH design.
The Navy utilized an innovative acquisition process in the design and construction of AGOR 26. Referred to as Section 845, the process provides the federal government the means to contract in a commercial acquisition environment.
Thanks to Section 845, we were able to seek out Atlantic Marine, a shipyard with an outstanding reputation for on-time, quality work, said Dale Bennett, vice president and general manager of NE&SS-Marine Systems. Atlantic Marine has been a great partner, and we have been very pleased with their performance, continued Bennett. AGOR 26 is the first ship to be procured utilizing the Section 845 acquisition provision, thereby making Lockheed Martin the first systems integrator to be a prime contractor on a ship construction project.
This creative approach on the part of the Navy and industry resulted in a design and construction cycle reduction of 16 months. What would have taken 43 months will now take us 27 months, Bennett added.
Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) NE&SS-Marine Systems is part of Lockheed Martin Naval Electronics and Surveillance Systems (NE&SS) which provides surface ship and submarine combat systems, antisubmarine warfare and ocean surveillance systems, missile launching systems, radar and sensor systems, ships systems integration services and other advanced systems and services to customers worldwide. Both Lockheed Martin NE&SS-Marine Systems and NE&SS are units of Lockheed Martin Corporation.
Atlantic Marine, Inc. and its sister company, Atlantic Dry Dock Corp., have served both commercial and military customers for over 35 years. They have the capability to build vessels up to 4000 tons. Atlantic Marine has built well over 200 vessels, including numerous scientific research vessels, casino/dinner vessels, cruise ships and passenger ferries.