SAN DIEGO, July 1 (UPI) -- General Dynamics NASSCO has received a $60 million contract from the U.S. Navy to purchase long-lead materials.
The materials would be for the construction of a third Mobile Landing Platform ship.
NASSCO is already under contract to build two MLP ships and with this new contract will place orders for the ship's engines and other components that have significant manufacturing lead times.
A contract that fully funds construction of the third MLP ship is expected to be awarded by early next year.
"With the first MLP ship now under construction, we are pleased to be selected to build another MLP," said Frederick J. Harris, president of General Dynamics NASSCO. "This contract demonstrates the U.S. Navy's confidence in our ability to build and deliver a high-quality ship on schedule."
The MLP is a new class of auxiliary ship for the Navy. The ships will join the three Maritime Prepositioning Force squadrons that are strategically located around the world to enable rapid response in a crisis.
MLP ships will be 765 feet in length and 164 feet in beam, with a design draft of 29 feet. The deadweight tonnage is in excess of 60,000 metric tons.