Irving Shipbuilding held a keel laying ceremony for Canada’s third Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship, the future HMCS Max Bernays. The ships are built using modular construction, and therefore do not have a traditional keel that runs the entire length of the ship. The ceremony, Irving’s Halifax Shipyard, recognized the first keel unit of the ship’s center section.
The lead ship in the Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship program, the future HMCS Harry DeWolf, is now pier side at Halifax Shipyard and is scheduled to be turned over to the Royal Canadian Navy in summer 2019.
The second ship in the class, the future HMCS Margaret Brooke, is underway at Halifax Shipyard. The ship’s center and stern sections have been assembled, and the bow section is under construction.
Last month, the Canadian government announced it would procure a sixth AOPS. The original construction contract only guaranteed construction of five ships, but allowed for construction of a sixth ship if the shipbuilder could find enough savings within the existing program budget. Those savings have not been realized, but the government will invest additional funding to allow construction of the sixth ship to proceed.