General Dynamics Electric Boat has signed a $544 million contract with AECOM infrastructure firm to continue building a facility at Groton shipyard, a town in New London County, Connecticut, to support construction of new class of ballistic-missile submarines.
“General Dynamics Electric Boat today announced that it had signed a contract to begin the next phase of construction on a facility to support construction of the nation’s new class of ballistic-missile submarines,” the company said in a release Friday.
The contract to complete the construction of the South Yard Assembly Building (SYAB) was signed with AECOM of Los Angeles, California. In September 2019, the company broke ground on the SYAB, a 200,000 square-foot building where the US Navy’s Columbia class submarines will be built. Electric Boat is also expanding and modernizing other manufacturing spaces in Groton and building a floating dry dock.
Electric Boat is the prime contractor on the design and build of the 12 ships of the Columbia class, which will replace the aging Ohio-class of ballistic-missile submarines. Early construction began in 2017 at the company's facility in Quonset Point, Rhode Island. Final assembly and test of the Columbia class will take place starting in 2024 at Electric Boat's shipyard in Groton.
The cost of each the Columbia-class nuclear powered ballistic missile submarine (SSBN) is approximately $7.2 billion.
In September 2017, the US Navy had awarded a $5 billion contract to the company for the Integrated Product and Process Development design completion for the Columbia-class SSBNs. According to the contract, the submarine is intended to fire nuclear missiles at enemy positions after remaining hidden under-water.
The contract also includes component and technology development, missile tube module and reactor compartment bulkhead prototyping and manufacturing efforts, and United Kingdom Strategic Weapon Support System kit manufacturing for the Columbia class ballistic missile submarines.
In June of the same year, Electric Boat was awarded $203 million to produce missile tubes to be fitted on the submarines as part of the US-UK common missile compartment program.
The common missile compartment was developed by both countries and will be used on the next-generation Columbia and Dreadnought strategic nuclear submarines, according to the Defense Department.
The tubes will house the Trident II D-5 nuclear missile by Lockheed Martin.