Rear Adm. Scott Pappano, program executive officer for the Columbia-class ballistic missile submarine program, said the U.S. Navy already issued a solicitation for the first two vessels and that his office expects to reach a contract with industry partners before October 2020, USNI News reported Wednesday.
“The contract needs to be in place in [Fiscal Year 2021] so that we can get construction rolling and meet that FY ‘27 delivery,” he said at the Naval Submarine League’s annual symposium. “So the thought process is, contract those two ships under one contract, a cost-plus contract, and then use lessons learned from that to do fixed-price contracting for hulls 3 and beyond.”
Pappano also cited his efforts to bring in new suppliers to mitigate risks in the program and balance quality and schedule with cost.
“In the acquisition triangle of cost, schedule, performance, I’ve got performance locked, I’ve got the schedule locked; that puts me in kind of a bad spot for cost, because that’s the only variable. It is what it is. So it’s my job to make sure we control cost,” he added.