New Orleans-based United States Marine Inc. (USMI) has landed an $18 million contract from the government of Oman to build three Kevlar composite-hulled patrol boats for the Royal Oman Police Coast Guard. The contract could lead to additional work from Oman.
The vessels will be built in New Orleans and finished out at USMI’s yard in Pass Christian, Miss. The contract is expected to create between 15 and 20 new jobs at the company’s New Orleans facility. USMI currently employs 115 workers.
“The boat is based off the USMI MKV design for the U.S. Navy, which is in service throughout the world,” said Shawn Killeen, the yard’s president. “It is a proven hull form.”
The 90’×18’×10’ patrol boats will be specifically built to fight against the importation of illegal drugs that are used to finance terrorist enterprises, officials said. United States Marine landed the contract with the help of the Defense Department’s Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program.
FMS is a government-to-government program for the sales of U.S. defense equipment, services and training. The U.S. government says that the responsible sale of arms furthers national security and foreign policy objectives by strengthening bilateral defense relations, supporting coalition building, and enhancing relations with its friends and allies.
“Working with FMS has been a great team relationship,” said Killeen. “The entire USMI team is familiar with the requirements of FMS programs. USMI delivers good products and service with no hassles. That’s why they like us.”
Patrol boats must be fast and maneuverable. The boats will be powered by twin MTU 12V4000M-90 diesels, each producing 2,735 hp at 2,100 rpm. The mains will connect to Kamewa 56SII waterjets through ZF BW 4650 marine gears with 1.595:1 reduction ratios. The propulsion package will give the boats a running speed of 45 knots. Kamewa will also handle the steering system.
Two G&M Panther 48 gensets, sparking 33kw of electricity each, provide ship’s service power.
The boats will each carry two officers and 10 crew.
Tankage includes 2,500 gals. of fuel and 900 gals. fresh water.
The electronics suite will include two Furuno radars, two Motorola Astro Spectra XLT5000 VHF radios, Motorola Astro Spectra XLT5000 UHF radio, Barrett BC9800 GMDSS, and Raymarine SL631 GPS.
The boats are scheduled for delivery in September 2006, January 2007 and May 2007. All will carry ABS classification as high-speed naval craft.
USMI is also working on two contracts for the U.S. Navy, performing maintenance and, in some cases, replacing the Navy’s 36’ RIB and 33’ SOCR (Special Operations Command Riverine) vessels. The RIB contract runs through 2010 and the SOCR agreement through 2013.
— Ken Hocke