The Vancouver-based shipbuilder tasked with providing Canada’s navy with a new fleet of support ships is turning to a defence giant’s local operations to power the brains of the vessels.
Seaspan Shipyards, the prime contractor for the Royal Canadian Navy’s next-generation joint support ships, announced at an event in Ottawa Wednesday that it will use Lockheed Martin Canada’s CMS 330 – a combat management system that controls a variety of a ship’s communications and commands – in the fleet.
The joint support ships will be used primarily in resupply missions that require transporting cargo such as fuel and ammunition. Considered the brain of the ship, CMS 330 integrates a vessel’s data collection, weapons systems and other planning functions into a single operating system.
“Whether it is enforcing sovereignty in Canada’s waters, operating in an international threat environment or engaging in humanitarian or disaster relief, CMS 330 will allow crews to counter threats faster and more efficiently, where and when necessary,” said Lockheed Martin Canada Rotary and Mission Systems vice-president and general manager Gary Fudge in a statement.
Lockheed Martin’s local operations in Kanata are the primary developers of the CMS, which is also used on Canada’s Arctic-Offshore Patrol Ships and HALIFAX class frigates. Foreign navies such as New Zealand’s and Chile’s have also made use of CMS 330 in their fleets.
Should Lockheed Martin’s group move forward as the ship designer for the federal government’s next-generation surface combatants, CMS 330 will also be used in those warships. A federal trade tribunal threw out a complaint earlier this month that called for the government to rescind the Lockheed Martin-led group’s status as the preferred proponent in the procurement process, citing missing requirements in the bidder’s proposed design.
– With files from Canadian Press