Martin Defense Group Awarded $8m Navy Contract for Advanced Planing Hull Research

Article by Brandon Pearse |  

Portland, ME — 6 August 2019 — Martin Defense Group LLC has been awarded an $8 million contract from the U.S. Navy Office of Naval Research (ONR). The contract entitled “Advanced Planing Hull Research” focuses on pursuing new science and technology for safer hulls and hybrid-electric propulsion systems for fast boats.

Martin Defense Group will work directly with Front Street Shipyard in Belfast, ME, who will combine their “Built in Maine” composites experience with Martin Defense Group’s research strength. Front Street Shipyard will build the Martin Defense Group prototypes and collaborate on testing at-sea. The science and technology advancements from this research will benefit all the Navy’s small craft programs.

“Maine is home to the best shipbuilders in the world, and our state has long had an integral role in our national security. Martin Defense Group’s engineering and research strength combined with Front Street Shipyard’s composites experience will benefit all of the Navy’s small-craft programs,” said Senator Collins. “As a senior member of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, I strongly advocated for the funding that made this research possible and am so proud of the work Martin Defense Group and other Maine companies do to support our Navy and our nation’s defense.”

This new contract will continue to build on the success of Maine’s historic leadership in the maritime field and revolutionize it for our digital and renewable energy age. Opportunities to collaborate with Maine maritime companies such as Front Street Shipyard were vital in supporting Martin Defense Group’s Portland office, opened in 2018.

Martin Kao, CEO of Martin Defense Group, said, “Our company is committed the State of Maine, and thanks to Senator Collins’ support, we have been able to partner with the University of Maine and the State’s boat building ecosystem to address the Navy’s new challenges and needs.” Building on Mr. Kao’s comments, JB Turner, president of Front Street Shipyard, said, “We believe our experience with advanced composite construction for boats will provide a key advantage to our Navy, and we are happy to team with Martin Defense Group to use our combined capabilities in this area through this new research program.”

About Martin Defense Group

Martin Defense Group is a leading provider of innovative research and development services for the Department of Defense, NASA, and other government agencies. Historically a provider of naval architecture and modeling and simulation services, its portfolio has diversified to encompass digital twins, power and energy systems, unmanned vehicles, robotics, autonomy, AI/ML, data science, inflatables, composites, and additive manufacturing. Since its founding in Hawaii in 1979, Martin Defense Group has grown to open offices in Rhode Island, Maine, Virginia, Michigan, South Carolina, and Oklahom