In-Service Vessel Sustainment (ISVS) is the Coast Guard’s strategic class-by-class evaluation of its vessels to determine what major maintenance and upgrades are necessary for them to reach or extend their service lives.
Why this program?
As vessels age, systems become obsolete and the cost and time spent on maintenance becomes prohibitive. The Coast Guard has determined that strategic major maintenance and recapitalization can improve reliability of its vessels, help control maintenance costs, and increase time underway conducting missions. If necessary, additional work can be completed to allow vessels to operate efficiently past their service life until replacements are procured. Systematic evaluation of Coast Guard surface assets and creation of a recurring Acquisition Construction and Improvement funding stream through ISVS provides a cost-effective way to ensure the service has the surface assets necessary to complete its missions. ISVS work can be classified as service life extension projects, major maintenance availabilities (MMAs) or mission effectiveness projects.
A cutter capital asset management plan, which lays out a system of evaluative criteria, was developed to prioritize cutter classes to be included in the ISVS program. The 140-foot icebreaking tug was identified as the highest priority; the project started in 2014 with the objective of accomplishing a 15-year service life extension of the nine-vessel fleet. MMA work on the 225-foot seagoing buoy tenders began in July 2015. A four-year project to extend the service life of Coast Guard Cutter Eagle – the Coast Guard’s sail training ship – ended in 2018.
The ISVS program is the successor of the Mission Effectiveness Project (MEP), which replaced systems on the 210-foot and 270-foot medium endurance cutters and the 110-foot Island-class patrol boats to extend their operational lives until the arrival of new national security cutters, fast response cutters and offshore patrol cutters.
How are upgrades implemented?
All ISVS program work is performed using the most cost-effective option to meet cost, schedule and performance requirements. Current ISVS program work is performed by the Coast Guard at the Coast Guard Yard in Curtis Bay, Maryland and commercial ship yards. The yard demonstrated its ability to efficiently plan and execute major ship overhaul projects during MEP.