Under a contract option the two companies signed in December 2012, the new vessels, which will service offshore drilling operations in the Gulf of Mexico, reflect BAE Systems’ continued growth in U.S. commercial shipbuilding and its support to the oil and gas industry.
Each of the Jackson Offshore Operators vessels will be qualified under the U.S. Jones Act and will measure 252 feet long and 60 feet wide. BAE Systems’ Jacksonville shipyard recently commenced construction on the first of two PSVs as part of the original contract. Those two vessels will be completed in 2015.
“It’s an exciting time for Jackson Offshore Operators, and the exercising of this option is an example of our confidence in BAE Systems as a quality shipbuilder,” said Lee Jackson, president and chief executive officer of Jackson Offshore Operators, LLC. “Like our other previously announced vessels being built by BAE Systems, once delivered, these vessels will be deployed on multiyear contracts in the Gulf of Mexico.”
“We are very pleased that Jackson Offshore Operators has the confidence in BAE Systems to move forward with their additional ships,” said Richard McCreary, vice president of BAE Systems Southeast Shipyards. “These ships will allow our Jacksonville shipyard to continue to grow its backlog and its employment, which is important in these times of federal budget uncertainty.”
The GPA 675J PSV design is provided by Guido Perla & Associates, Inc. of Seattle. The vessels include an integrated Rolls-Royce ship systems package, inclusive of a low-voltage, active front-end diesel electric system and a complete Rolls-Royce propulsion package with Azipull propulsion thrusters.
The Jackson Offshore contract is part of a continued effort by BAE Systems to increase new ship construction projects at its facilities in Jacksonville, Florida and Mobile, Alabama. In Mobile, BAE Systems is currently building two dump scows, a trailing suction hopper dredge and the first of two PSVs.
BAE Systems currently employs approximately 400 people in Jacksonville and expects to hire an additional 120 workers there by the middle of this year. The company currently employs approximately 850 people in Mobile and expects to reach a total of 1,500 workers there by the end of this year. Career opportunities are available at www.baesystems.jobs.
BAE Systems is a leading provider of ship repair, maintenance, conversion, overhaul and new fabrication construction for commercial, private and government customers. The company operates six full-service shipyards in Alabama, Florida, Northern and Southern California, Virginia, and Hawaii, and offers a highly skilled and experienced workforce of more than 5,000 employees, dry docks, and significant pier space and ship support services. The company also has proven commercial shipbuilding, module fabrication and robust industrial fabrication capabilities at the Mobile and Jacksonville shipyards.
BAE Systems’ customer base includes industry leaders operating offshore energy support vessels, oil exploration vessels, cargo ships, cruise ships, oil transportation vessels and international carriers.