Vigor Launches MSV(L) Prototype for US Army

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US shipbuilder Vigor has launched the first in a series of modernized landing craft for the US military at its manufacturing plant in Vancouver, Wash.

The Maneuver Support Vessel (Light), or MSV(L), will replace the Landing Craft Mechanized-8, (LCM-8,) a Vietnam-era craft unable to carry some of today’s equipment. today due to the weight of modern combat. Vehicles. Designed with increased payload capacity, increased speed and maneuverability and improved draft, the The MSV(L) will improve the speed and efficiency of dynamic repositioning of Army forces in inter-coastal areas, rivers and inland waterways, and in anti-access/area denial environments.

“The launch of the MSV(L) prototype, an all-new, first-in-class ship, is a major achievement that we should celebrate,” said Colonel Beth Behn, Army Transportation Chief. “Not only does this prototype represent the first of its kind for the military as a digital ship, but also the team as a whole has overcome several hurdles related to labor and supply chain issues related to the COVID-19 I couldn’t be prouder of this partnership to take one step closer to providing Army sailors around the world with a truly modernized capability.

“The MSV(L) represents the first acquisition of a major new watercraft system in more than 20 years, representing the U.S. Army’s commitment to Army watercraft modernization,” said Brig. Gen. Samuel L. (Luke) Peterson, General Manager, Army Program for Combat Support and Combat Support (PEO CS&CSS.) “Our Product Manager, Army Watercraft Systems, has worked closely with our corporate partners of Army and Vigor to ensure a successful launch. The team did an outstanding job overcoming some pretty significant schedule challenges to get to where we are today. This launch is a direct result of the collaborative work between many dedicated military and Vigor professionals.

The army awarded Vigor in late 2017 a 10-year contract for the development and production of up to 36 of the new craft. In September 2019, Vigor and the Army laid down the keel in a ceremony also held in Vancouver. The Army’s current procurement target is to build 13 ships, according to Wolfgang Petermann, project manager, Transportation Systems, PEO CS&CSS. The Army’s strategy for the MSV(L) has focused on integrating mature off-the-shelf commercial subsystems into a new hull form, which takes advantage of innovation and competition in marine industry design, he added.

The length of the MSV(L) is 117 feet. It will have a speed of 21 knots fully loaded and 30 knots empty. Its range will be 360 ​​nautical miles when fully loaded. Eight army sailors will man the MSV(L).

Each ship’s payload will be 82 short tons, meaning it can carry one combat-configured M1 Abrams tank, or two Stryker Fighting Vehicles, or four Joint Light Tactical Vehicles, as well as several other load configurations. useful.

MSV(L) is now entering builder trials, which are designed to finalize Vigor’s manufacturing and commissioning activities. The manufacturer’s tests should be completed in November. These will be followed by extensive acceptance testing, led by the Army Product Manager, Army Watercraft Systems and Army Test and Evaluation Command, to verify that the watercraft meets the expected requirements.

An initial low-throughput production decision on the Maneuver Support Vessel (Light) is scheduled for early 2023. The prototype is expected to be delivered to the Army Mariner community headquartered at Joint Base Langley-Eustis in early 2024 .

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