By Mark Edward Nero
San Diego-based General Dynamics NASSCO said Aug. 25 that it has signed a contract with Matson Navigation Co. to design and build two Kanaloa Class liquefied natural gas-capable containerships with roll-on/roll-off capability.
The 870-foot-long, 3,500-TEU containerships are designed with the ability to transport containers, automobiles and rolling stock, including trailers. The design also incorporates LNG-capable main and auxiliary engines, which are compliant with Tier III emission requirements.
“Our partnership with Matson builds upon NASSCO’s successful track record of constructing high-quality, highly efficient and on-time delivery for the Jones Act trade,” General Dynamics NASSCO and Bath Iron Works President Fred Harris said in a statement.
The Jones Act-qualified ships are to be built at the NASSCO shipyard in San Diego. Construction of the first containership is slated to begin in early 2018, with deliveries set for 2019 and mid-2020, respectively.
“We are pleased to be working with NASSCO again on new vessels for Matson. NASSCO’s deep history and reputation for quality give us confidence that these new ships will be the most advanced efficient and productive vessels in our fleet,” Matson President and CEO Matt Cox said. “Our last NASSCO vessel, RJ Pfeiffer, has been a mainstay of our Hawaii service and we look forward to adding the superior performance of these new Kanaloa Class vessels to the fleet.”
Once delivered, both ships are expected to serve a trade route between the continental West Coast and Hawaii.
Over the past decade, NASSCO has delivered 28 ocean-going ships to government and commercial customers, including the world’s first LNG-powered containerships. The company partners with Daewoo Ship Engineering Co. to provide ship design and shipbuilding technologies for customers.