Huntington Ingalls Industries’ (HII) Ingalls Shipbuilding division authenticated the keel on October 20, 2015 on the Aegis guided missile destroyer, USS Paul Ignatius (DDG-117). DDG-117 is the 31st ship in the Arleigh Burke (DDG-51) class of destroyers Ingalls is building for the U.S. Navy.
«The keel authentication is an important milestone in a ship’s life and it’s really a foundation upon which the ship is made», said Ingalls Shipbuilding President Brian Cuccias. «Paul Ignatius epitomizes the leadership and agility that has propelled our nation forward – I couldn’t think of a better namesake for USS Paul Ignatius (DDG-117). Over the coming years as we build this great ship, our shipbuilders know what we do is important. We are building great ships to defend our nation, to protect the brave men and women who will serve on this ship and come back safely home to their families».
Ingalls welder Reginald Whisenhunt welded the initials of two authenticators – the ship’s namesake Paul Ignatius and 26-year shipbuilder Bill Jones, an Ingalls hull superintendent – onto a steel plate signifying the keel of DDG-117 to be «truly and fairly laid». The plate will remain affixed to the ship throughout the ship’s lifetime.
«It is a pleasure for me to be here with Huntington Ingalls officials and the men and women who are building DDG-117», said Ignatius, former Secretary of the U.S. Navy. «DDG-117 will become part of our country’s proud destroyer tradition. Built tougher than steel by one of America’s leading shipbuilders, constructed by dedicated and skilled shipyard technicians and manned eventually by the world’s finest naval officers and seamen, this new ship will sail for many decades into the future».
Nancy Ignatius, Paul’s wife, is the ship sponsor and was also present at the ceremony. DDG-117 is named in honor of Ignatius, who served as Secretary of the U.S. Navy from 1967 to 1969 and was the Assistant Secretary of Defense during President Lyndon B. Johnson’s administration.
«Every time the men and women of Ingalls craft another destroyer, they build a living, lasting remembrance of either the courage, the leadership or the intellectual contribution of the very best that the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps have to offer», said Captain Mark Vandroff, the U.S. Navy’s DDG-51 program manager.
Ingalls is building three other destroyers – John Finn (DDG-113), which is scheduled to be delivered in 2016, Ralph Johnson (DDG-114), which will launch by the end of the year and Delbert D. Black (DDG-119), which started construction in July.
To date, Ingalls has delivered 28 DDG-51 destroyers to the U.S. Navy. These highly capable, multi-mission ships can conduct a variety of operations, from peacetime presence and crisis management to sea control and power projection, all in support of the United States’ military strategy. DDGs are capable of simultaneously fighting air, surface and subsurface battles. The ships contain myriad offensive and defensive weapons designed to support maritime defense needs well into the 21st century.
|Length Overall||510 feet/156 m|
|Beam – Waterline||59 feet/18 m|
|Draft||30.5 feet/9.3 m|
|Displacement – Full Load||9,217 tons/9,363 metric tons|
|Power Plant||4 General electric LM 2500-30 gas turbines; 2 shafts; 2 CRP (Contra-Rotating) propellers; 100,000 shaft horsepower/75,000 kW|
|Speed||in excess of 30 knots/34.5 mph/55.5 km/h|
|Range||4,400 NM/8,149 km at 20 knots/23 mph/37 km/h|
|Crew||380 total: 32 Officers, 27 CPO (Chief Petty Officer), 321 OEM|
|Surveillance||SPY-1D Phased Array Radar and Aegis Combat System (Lockheed Martin); SPS-73(V) Navigation; SPS-67(V)3 Surface Search; 3 SPG-62 Illuminator; SQQ-89(V)6 sonar incorporating SQS-53C hull mounted and SQR-19 towed array sonars used with Mark-116 Mod 7 ASW fire control system|
|Electronics/Countermeasures||SLQ-32(V)3; Mark-53 Mod 0 Decoy System; Mark-234 Decoy System; SLQ-25A Torpedo Decoy; SLQ-39 Surface Decoy; URN-25 TACAN; UPX-29 IFF System; Kollmorgen Mark-46 Mod 1 Electro-Optical Director|
|Aircraft||2 embarked SH-60 helicopters ASW operations; RAST (Recovery Assist, Secure and Traverse)|
|Armament||2 Mark-41 Vertical Launching System (VLS) with 90 Standard, Vertical Launch ASROC (Anti-Submarine Rocket) & Tomahawk ASM (Air-to-Surface Missile)/LAM (Loitering Attack Missile); 5-in (127-mm)/54 Mark-45 gun; 2 CIWS (Close-In Weapon System); 2 Mark-32 triple 324-mm torpedo tubes for Mark-46 or Mark-50 ASW torpedos|
Flight IIA: Technology Insertion
|DDG-116 Thomas Hudner||GDBIW|
|DDG-117 Paul Ignatius||HIIIS|
|DDG-118 Daniel Inouye||GDBIW|
|DDG-119 Delbert D. Black||HIIIS|