Comments can be submitted to the USCG-2018-0193 online docket on or before Sept. 20, 2018.

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The US Coast Guard’s current fleet of polar icebreakers has two heavy icebreakers, Coast Guard cutters 'Polar Star' and 'Polar Sea', and one medium icebreaker, Coast Guard Cutter 'Healy'.

USCG’s heavy icebreakers have both surpassed their designed 30 year service life. The current program acquisition strategy is approved to construct up to three heavy polar icebreakers and may expand to include up to three medium icebreakers, with planned service design lives of 30 years each. The first of these new polar icebreakers is expected to delivered in 2023.

A new polar icebreaker will also be designed to carry out the US Coast Guard’s primary missions supported by the current polar icebreaker fleet. Expected missions include ice operations, defense readiness, aids to navigation, living marine resources, marine safety, marine environmental protection, other law enforcement, ports, waterways, and coastal security, and search and rescue.