The US Naval Sea Systems Command has awarded Louisiana-based Swiftships LLC a $50.1 million contract modification for the construction of an additional four landing craft utility (LCU) units.
The latest contract covers boats four to seven, and comes after Swiftships received an initial contract for the detail design and construction of the first of a new generation of landing craft for the navy in March 2018.
Swiftships subsequently got a follow-on order for boats two and three in February 2019. The navy plans to buy a total of 32 LCUs.
Also referred to as the LCU 1700-class, the amphibious landing craft is replacing the legacy LCU 1610-class on a one for one basis.
The craft are carried aboard amphibious assault ships to the objective area, and used across the range of military operations to deliver vehicles, personnel and cargo from the sea to the shore and from shore to shore.
LCU 1700 is a heavy-lift platform with complementary capabilities to the faster air cushion landing craft which have a significantly shorter range, smaller payload capacity, no habitability and operating hour limitations.
Swiftships is expected to complete work under the latest contract by October 2022.