VT Halter Marine, Inc. (VT Halter Marine), a subsidiary of VT Systems, Inc. (VT Systems), held a keel laying ceremony for T-AGS 66 USNS Maury, which is currently under construction at Halter Moss Point, last week.
In December 2009, VT Halter Marine was awarded a contract of approximately $87M to build an enhanced version of the T-AGS 60 Class oceanographic survey ship for the U.S. Navy. Delivery of the vessel is expected in July 2013.
T-AGS 60 Class ships are designed and constructed to provide multi-purpose oceanographic capabilities for typical missions such as: oceanographic sampling and data collection of surface, midwater and ocean floor parameters; launching, recovering, and towing scientific packages, both tethered and autonomous, including handling, monitoring, and servicing remotely operated vehicles (ROVs); shipboard oceanographic data processing and sample analysis; and precise navigation, track line maneuvering, and station keeping to support deep ocean and coastal surveys.
VT Halter Marine is the leading designer and builder of specialized oceanographic ships for the U.S. Navy and has experience in building the previous six ships of the T-AGS 60 Class; T-AGOS 13 through T-AGOS 18 ocean surveillance ships; a T-AGOS 23 Class SWATH ocean surveillance ship, T-AGS 51 and T-AGS 52 hydrographic survey ships; oceanographic survey ships AGOR 23, 24 and 25; NOAA AGOR Ronald H. Brown; and four fisheries survey vessels (FSVs) for NOAA. A T-AGM 25 missile range instrumentation ship is currently under construction at VT Halter Marine in Pascagoula.
Bill Skinner, CEO at VT Halter Marine, commented: "The keel laying ceremony marks a major milestone in the construction schedule for T-AGS 66. With construction of this vessel underway, we proudly continue our longstanding history of building T-AGS oceanographic vessels for the U.S. Navy."