Ahead of an upcoming industry day, the Navy on Wednesday announced it had actually established a program office last year to recapitalize and modernize the infrastructure at the public shipyards.

The Naval Sea System Command’s (NAVSEA) Shipyard Infrastructure Optimization Plan (SIOP) Program Office, PMS-555, was established in June 2018. PMS-555 is working with the commander of Navy Installation Command (CNIC) and Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) “to recapitalize and modernize the infrastructure at the four public nuclear shipyards.”

The Norfolk Naval Shipyard. Photo: GAO.

Improving the infrastructure includes dry dock repairs, restoring shipyard facilities and optimizing their placement, and replacing aging/deteriorating capital equipment.

The Navy said executing the plan will improve the yards’ productivity and increase maintenance throughput to support combat readiness.

The Navy previously announced the SIOP project last year as a 20-year $21 billion plan to modernize and optimize the public shipyards. At the time the Navy said it planned to focus on repairing and upgrading the drydocks as an initial priority (Defense Daily, April 18, 2018).

Developing, programming, and executing the plan is the responsibility of PMS-555.

The Navy’s recently released first long-range maintenance and modernization plan further explained the SIOP “will restore badly outdated facilities while simultaneously reducing total personnel and material travel and movement by an average of 65 percent, which equates to recovering 328K man-days per year” (Defense Daily, March 22).

The Navy’s four public shipyards conduct maintenance and repair work on nuclear-powered vessels. They include Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth, Va.; Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery, Maine; Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility in Bremerton, Wash.; and Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

NAVSEA announced the first milestone PMS-555 is set to achieve is the development of a “digital twin” of the shipyards. A digital twin is a virtual representation of the shipyards to be used “to conduct modeling and simulations of the shipyard environment to aid in evaluations and decisions for the future shipyard infrastructure.”

Steven Lagana, PMS-555 program manager noted the plan, frames the vision of shipyard infrastructure through three connected components: dry docks, facilities, and capital equipment.

The SIOP sees “these configurations are fundamentally linked to the shipyards’ ability to execute the mission they are tasked to do,” Lagana said in a statement.

“We are utilizing modeling and simulation as a tool to integrate these components to better inform the desired infrastructure layout. Through this, the Navy will be in a better position to make meaningful, long-lasting investments that not only address the condition of the facilities and equipment but also change the way the work is conducted,” Lagana added.

The office is hosting its first industry day at the Washington Navy Yard on April 8.

“We’re sold out. We have more than 100 companies from 19 states and the District of Columbia who are coming to hear about the program and see how they can be part of this once-in-a-century team that will deliver the shipyards the Navy needs,” Lagana said.

The Navy said the office consists of industrial engineers, process improvement specialists, facilities engineers, regulatory compliance specialists, strategic and financial analysts, Civil Engineer Corps officers, construction managers and construction schedulers from NAVSEA, CNIC and NAVFAC.