The US Naval Sea Systems Command has awarded General Dynamics Electric Boat (GDEB) a $269.3 million contract for work on missile tubes for the ballistic missile submarines of the US and UK.
The contract will see GDEB manufacture 42 missile tubes and missile tube outfitting material for the US Navy’s Columbia-class fleet and the Royal Navy’s Dreadnought-class SSBNs.
Most of the work will be performed at GDEB’s Quonset Point facility and is expected to be completed by May 2028.
The missile tubes are part of a joint US-UK Common Missile Compartment program which started in December 2008.
The program faced some problems in 2018 after faulty welding was identified on missile tube systems manufactured by subcontractor BWX Technologies. The anticipated start of construction on the future USS Columbia in fiscal year 2021 was not affected by the issue, according to the US Navy.
The Royal Navy has already held a steel-cutting ceremony for the future HMS Dreadnought, starting construction of what will eventually be home to the control panels and switchboards serving the nuclear reactor.
The US Navy plans to build 12 units in the class to replace the current Ohio-class SSBNs while the four planned Dreadnought-class submarines will replace the Vanguard-class boats in Royal Navy service.