Birdon to build more than 300 BEBs for US Army

Birdon America has been selected to build bridge erection boats (BEB) for the US Navy.

Following an extensive testing process, the US Army chose the Series II Birdon Bridge Erection Boat. Birdon America has been granted a contract to deliver 374 of the BEBs for the US Army.

The company, a subsidiary of Birdon Australia, proposed a 7.0 by 3.3-metre vessel that had been accepted for a similar application in Australia.

The US Army version has been adapted to include two NAMJet TJ38IHH jets which pump more water at lower revolutions. This allows increased propeller tip clearance to allow the jet to operate in more severe water conditions while allowing a higher bollard pull.

Power for the twin jets in the Birdon BEB is provided by a pair of Cummins QSB6.7 litre engines each rated at 184kW turning ZF gears with 1:2.76 reduction.

These six-cylinder engines are EPA Tier 3, RCD and IMO2 rated. This combination of engine and jets give the boats a top speed in excess of 25 knots.