Leonardo DRS has been awarded contracts valued at over US$3bn, when fully funded, to provide integrated electric propulsion system products for the US Navy’s Columbia-class submarines.
The contracts were previously announced on the DRS 2023 Q3 earnings call and solidify DRS’s position through shipset 12 for the Columbia-class program. Leonardo DRS was chosen by General Dynamics Electric Boat and the US Navy to design and manufacture the permanent magnet main propulsion electric motor, the propulsion motor drives, switchgear and the propulsion controls – the heart of the Columbia electric drive propulsion system. These are key components of the primary propulsion system of the next-generation ballistic missile submarine fleet. All prototype components of this system completed full power endurance and other testing at the Navy’s land-based test facility.
“This award highlights Leonardo DRS as an agile and trusted partner for the US Navy and General Dynamics Electric Boat, having now been awarded contracts to supply our state-of-the-art electric propulsion components through shipset 12 for the Columbia-class program,” said Bill Lynn, CEO of Leonardo DRS. “We are proud to be a part of this team and be the provider of these critical components for the most advanced ballistic missile submarine in our Navy’s history.”
According to the companies, the Columbia-class is a new class of ballistic missile submarine and a top priority for the US Navy. They are designed to replace the fleet of Ohio-class submarines. At 170m long with a displacement of nearly 21,000 tons, the Columbia-class submarines will reportedly be the largest ever built by the United States.
“DRS is committed to our partnership with Electric Boat and the US Navy,” said Jon Miller, senior vice president and general manager of Leonardo DRS Naval Power Systems. “Their strategic mission is our purpose. Together, we develop innovative systems for critical next-generation national security platforms like the Columbia-class ballistic missile submarine.”
The integrated electric propulsion components will be manufactured in DRS facilities in Fitchburg, Massachusetts; Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin; Danbury, Connecticut; and High Ridge, Missouri. “This award is a reflection of our talented workforce and world-class propulsion technology that can provide capability from the power source to the propeller shaft,” said Miller.
Read more of the latest naval project updates from the electric and hybrid marine technology industry, here.