Shipbuilder Metal Shark has delivered an 87â€² x 19.5′ welded aluminum Near Coastal Patrol Vessel (NCPV) to the Dominican Republic’s Navy. The vessel has been delivered to the Dominican Republic under a $54 million U.S. Navy contract awarded to Metal Shark to produce up to thirteen 85-foot Defiant-class patrol craft for U.S. partner nations. Christened “Betelgeuse” in keeping with the Dominican tradition of naming military vessels after constellations, the new patrol craft was built at Metal Shark’s Franklin, Louisiana USA shipyard and officially incorporated into the Dominican Navy during a ceremony at the Las Calderas Navy Base on August 6th. The NCPV is designed to support a wide range of missions including search and rescue, border patrol, police and customs duties, counter-narcotics operations, and securing waters of economic importance.
The NCPV is a monohull vessel utilizing the parent-craft hull form of Damen Shipyards’ 2606 Standardized Patrol vessel, which has been significantly optimized by Metal Shark to suit the requirements of the NCPV mission. To maximize versatility, the NCPV carries a 5.6-meter Metal Shark-built aluminum RIB, powered by twin Mercury 50-horsepower four-stroke outboards, that quickly launched and retrieved via an integrated stern slipway in support of missions. Powered by twin 1,600-horsepower Caterpillar C-32 marine diesel engines turning fixed-pitch Michigan Wheel propellers through Twin Disc MGX-6599 transmissions, the NCPV has been designed for missions of up to six days at sea in nearshore ocean conditions, supporting an operating crew of ten.
“The NCPV program is a direct result of the increased demand among Metal Shark’s military operators worldwide for larger and more capable patrol vessels,” said Metal Shark CEO Chris Allard. “In terms of size, speed, endurance, and capability, we are working to meet those challenges head-on. We’re proud to deliver this vessel to the Dominican Republic and are looking forward to delivering multiple additional NCPVs across the Caribbean and Latin America in the months ahead.”
“Metal Shark has worked extensively with the U.S. Navy to design and build this highly capable platform which will bolster the effectiveness of maritime security and counter-drug missions across Latin American and the Caribbean,” said Henry Irizarry, Metal Shark’s Vice President of International Business Development.
Metal Shark is a diversified shipbuilder specializing in the design and construction of welded aluminum and steel vessels from 16′ to over 300′ for defense, law enforcement, and commercial operators. Key customers include the United States Coast Guard, Navy, Air Force, Army, foreign militaries, law enforcement agencies, fire departments, passenger vessel operators, pilot associations, towboat operators, and other clients worldwide. With three fully self-contained shipbuilding facilities in Alabama and Louisiana USA plus a dedicated engineering facility in Croatia, Metal Shark’s 500+ employees produce over 200 vessels per year with a proud and proven track record of high quality, on time deliveries.