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Babcock secures 10-year contract for Royal Navy aircraft carrier dry dockings

The UK RN's two QEC aircraft carriers at Babcock's Rosyth Dockyard. (Babcock)

UK shipbuilder Babcock has secured a GBP30 million (USD36.7 million) contract to conduct the routine dry-dock maintenance periods of the UK Royal Navy's (RN's) two Queen Elizabeth-class (QEC) carriers for the next decade at its dockyard in Rosyth, Fife.

Announcing its win on 14 May, Babcock said the 10-year contract also includes the provision of any contingency dockings that may be required over the timeframe of the agreement. Scheduled dockings will be conducted over a six-week period and will include all routine maintenance and repairs that cannot be done when the carriers are afloat.

The long-term docking contract is a significant win for Babcock and builds on the shipbuilder's previous success in securing a GBP5 million contract to conduct the first dry-dock period for first-in-class HMS Queen Elizabeth in mid-2019, five years after the ship was launched at the same yard.

Under the new contract, second-in-class Prince of Wales will undergo its six-week work package in 2022. After assuming the role of command ship for NATO's High Readiness Force (Maritime) in January 2022, Prince of Wales conducted its first operational deployment in support of Exercise ‘Cold Response' in Norway in March/April. Prince of Wales will continue to be maintained at high readiness in support of NATO exercises and operations throughout 2022. Meanwhile, Queen Elizabeth is conducting routine operational readiness training and exercises at sea in UK waters.

Under the QEC construction programme, both aircraft carriers completed final assembly at Babcock's Rosyth Dockyard.

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