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Eastern completes final critical design review for new OPC

Jul 9, 2018 04:20 PM

Delivery of the first offshore patrol cutter, USCGC Argus, is set for 2021

Courtesy Eastern Shipbuilding Group

The following is text of a news release from Eastern Shipbuilding Group (ESG):

(PANAMA CITY, Fla.) — Eastern Shipbuilding Group successfully conducted its final critical design review (FCDR) with the United States Coast Guard (USCG) on June 29 for the offshore patrol cutter (OPC) program.

This accomplishment comes after a week of discussions, demonstrations, and design presentations by ESG’s design team to the USCG and Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The purpose of the FCDR is to verify that the OPC detail design is integrated and internally consistent with the USCG requirements and points towards the exercise of the contract option for construction of the first hull USCGC Argus.

Construction of the lead vessel is anticipated to start after the contract option is exercised with delivery in 2021.

"This major milestone for the OPC program was achieved on time and our design was found to be ready for the next milestone, production readiness review (PRR) on July 31, 2018," said ESG President Joey D’Isernia. "We will continue to work closely with the Coast Guard to make the design more affordable to build and develop refinements to improve mission effectiveness. Today's success could not have been achieved without the hard work and dedication exhibited by the members of both the ESG and Coast Guard project teams. We are eager to take the next step with PRR and start of construction and look forward to an exciting fall for the Coast Guard and Eastern Shipbuilding.”

The OPC is designed to conduct multiple missions in support of the nation’s maritime security and border protection. The OPC will provide a capability bridge between the national security cutter, which patrols the open ocean in the most demanding maritime environments, and the fast response cutter, which serves closer to shore.

The OPC design includes the capability of carrying an MH-60R or MH-65 helicopter and three operational over-the-horizon (OTH) small boats. The vessel is also equipped with a highly sophisticated combat system and C4ISR (command, control, communications, computer, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance) suite that will enhance capabilities to execute the service’s missions.

On Sept. 15, 2016, the Coast Guard exercised the detail design contract option to Eastern. Eastern is currently finalizing its design to construct the offshore patrol cutters to replace the medium-endurance cutters currently in service. The contract includes options for production of up to nine vessels and has a potential total value of $2.38 billion.

On Sept. 7, 2017, the Coast Guard exercised ESG’s contract option for long lead time material (LLTM) for the first offshore patrol cutter, USCGC Argus. The Coast Guard plans to acquire 25 OPCs.

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