Marine transportation provider GulfMark Americas Inc. has selected BAE Systems’ shipyard in Mobile, AL, to build two new platform supply vessels to serve offshore drilling operations.
Each of the GulfMark vessels will measure 288 feet long and 62 feet wide and will be qualified under the U.S. Jones Act, which requires all commercial vessels transporting merchandise between ports in the United States to be built, owned, operated and manned by U.S. citizens and to be registered under the U.S. flag.
|The contract comes amid a growth period for both commercial shipbuilding and BAE Systems’ shipyard in Mobile, AL.|
The contract also includes options to build two additional platform supply vessels in the future.
Contract terms were not disclosed.
“The contract reflects continued growth in U.S. commercial shipbuilding for BAE Systems and a major step forward in the company’s support to the oil and gas industry,” BAE said in a statement.
The design for the Green DP2 vessels will be provided by MMC Ship Design & Marine Consulting Ltd. of Poland and will be based on similar platform supply vessels now under construction for GulfMark abroad.
The new vessels will be U.S. flagged and will support the anticipated future demand in the Gulf of Mexico offshore market, as well as other areas around the world as necessary, the companies said.
“GulfMark is excited about partnering with BAE Systems on this important project," said David Rosenwasser, chief operating officer of GulfMark Offshore. “BAE Systems demonstrated unique capabilities that are essential to us, and we look forward to building a long-term relationship going forward.”
The GulfMark contract is part of a recent expansion at the Mobile shipyard, according to BAE. Last month, the company teamed with Mid Ocean Tanker Company and Alterna Capital to complete the American Phoenix, a U.S. flag/Jones Act-qualified product chemical tanker. At 616 feet long and 105 feet wide, the vessel is the largest ever built and launched in Alabama.
BAE Systems has also begun construction on the MV Magdalen, a trailing suction hopper dredge that is scheduled to be delivered in 2014.
BAE Systems also announced in June that it had been awarded a contract with Great Lakes Dock & Dredge Company to build two 262-foot-long dump scows, which are used for dredging operations. Construction on those is expected to start in October.
BAE Systems currently employs more than 650 people in Mobile and expects to hire an additional 275 workers there by the end of this year.
BAE Systems also operates full-service shipyards in San Francisco and San Diego, CA; Jacksonville, FL; Norfolk, VA; and Pearl Harbor, HI.