US shipbuilder General Dynamics NASSCO has received a contract for the detailed design and construction of six John Lewis-class (TAO-205) oilers for the US Navy.
Designed to transfer fuel to the navy’s surface ships operating at sea, the oilers will have the capacity to carry 156,000 barrels of oil, including new bio fuels.
The oilers will also have significant dry cargo capacity, aviation capability and will reach a speed of 20 knots.
The first ship of the program was funded in the FY2016 budget, allowing engineering and design work to begin immediately.
The US Navy’s FY2017 budget requests advance procurement for a second ship, with procurement expected to occur in FY2018.
Currently, the San Diego-based shipbuilder is under contract to construct its fourth Expeditionary Sea Base (ESB) for the US Navy, USNS Hershel Williams, and is under contract to procure long-lead time material and engineering support for a fifth ESB.