Rolls Royce invests $11 million to support U.S. Navy ships

According to a press release published by Rolls-Royce on October 28, 2021, the firm has completed an $11 million investment in its flagship Naval Defense campus with the opening of new high-tech manufacturing, repair, and test facility. The 25,000ft² facility will enhance and modernize the company’s naval operations in Walpole, adding waterjet maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) servicing to its portfolio of world-class capabilities.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Freedom-class variant Littoral Combat Ship USS Detroit (Picture source: US Navy)

As the U.S. Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) program continues to mature, Rolls-Royce is seeing an increased demand for spare equipment and MRO services associated with scheduled maintenance.

Each Freedom-class variant of the LCS is equipped with four Rolls-Royce waterjets that were designed and manufactured on the company’s Walpole campus. The new facility gives Rolls-Royce the capacity and capability to perform the waterjet MRO work in Walpole, as well.

Rolls-Royce Propulsion equipment can be found on more than 95% of the U.S. Navy Surface Warfare fleet.

The Freedom-class is one of two classes of the littoral combat ship program, built for the United States Navy, that was proposed by a consortium formed by Lockheed Martin as "prime contractor" and by Fincantieri (project) through the subsidiary Marinette Marine (manufacturer) as a contender for a fleet of small, multipurpose warships to operate in the littoral zone.

Two ships were approved, to compete with the Independence-class design offered by General Dynamics and Austal for a construction contract of up to 55 vessels.