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22 Nov 16. Sauer contracted to build LCS training facility at NS Mayport in US. The US Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Southeast has contracted US-based construction services provider Sauer to construct a littoral combat ship (LCS) operational training facility at Naval Station (NS) Mayport, Florida. Under the $25m contract, Sauer will construct a steel-frame, reinforced concrete multi-story specialised training facility with standing seam roof and pile foundation. The building will house systems trainers, simulators, classrooms, personnel support space, a high-bay operational training area and applied instruction space suited to train personnel for the Freedom-class (LCS 2) platform. The new facility is slated to be completed by 2018. NS Mayport commanding officer captain David Yoder said: “Awarding this contract marks another significant step in supporting additional homeporting of Littoral Combat Ships at NS Mayport.
“The LCS programme is a key element of our future navy and we fully support the development of critical infrastructure that will ensure NS Mayport’s ability to effectively and efficiently serve as the East Coast homeport for these innovative ships.”
The crew will be trained within the LCS operational training facility and not on the actual ships.
Yoder added: “Training of LCS crews is unique and is a key enabler to operating these ships.
“The small crew size and multi-crewing is a departure from traditional navy manning concepts.
“Operational demands on the small, rotating LCS crews will not allow sufficient time for underway instruction as is practiced in legacy crewing concepts. LCS sailors must therefore report to a seaframe ready to deploy for a mission, stand watches and carry out their other duties prior to deployment.”
The facility will be incorporated with anti-terrorism / force protection (AT/FP) features while complying with AT/FP regulations, and physical security mitigation conforming to the US Department of Defense (DoD) Minimum Anti-Terrorism Standards for buildings. (Source: naval-technology.com)
22 Nov 16. Japan to purchase island to serve as joint US-JSDF training facility. The Japanese government is planning to buy the uninhabited island of Mageshima in Kagoshima Prefecture to use it as an aviation training facility for both the US military and the Japan Self-Defense Forces (JSDF), a spokesperson for the Ministry of Defense (MoD) in Tokyo told IHS Jane’s on 22 November.
The official said the MoD is “co-ordinating” with the owner to complete the purchase, although no figure was provided about the value of the transaction. The island – uninhabited since 1980 – covers about 8.2 km 2 and is administered by the city of Nishinoomote on Tanegashima. The island had previously been put forward as a possible site for a US base to take over the functions of the US Marine Corps (USMC) Air Station in Futenma, Okinawa, although that proposal was subsequently dropped. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
21 Nov 16. Babcock finalises multi-million pound joint venture with Oman Drydock Company. Babcock International Group, has finalised a Joint Venture (JV) with Oman Drydock Company (ODC) to enhance the naval capabilities at Duqm Port in Oman, providing local and international navies with world-class engineering services. The completion of the joint venture arrangements correspond with the UK Secretary of State for International Trade, Liam Fox MP, visiting Oman and underpin the UK’s commitment to support the development of Duqm as a strategic location to create valuable employment in the area and secure future opportunities.
After signing a Memorandum of Understanding (