Acceptance Trials

The future USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) successfully completed acceptance trials conducted by the U.S. Navy’s Board of Inspection and Survey (INSURV) in the Atlantic Ocean May 24-26 and is in final preparations for delivery.

The aircraft carrier Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) pulls into Naval Station Norfolk for the first time. The first-of-class ship – the first new U.S. aircraft carrier design in 40 years – spent several days conducting builder's sea trails, a comprehensive test of many of the ship's key systems and technologies (U.S. Navy photo by Matt Hildreth courtesy of Huntington Ingalls Industries/Released)
The aircraft carrier Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) pulls into Naval Station Norfolk for the first time. The first-of-class ship – the first new U.S. aircraft carrier design in 40 years – spent several days conducting builder’s sea trails, a comprehensive test of many of the ship’s key systems and technologies (U.S. Navy photo by Matt Hildreth courtesy of Huntington Ingalls Industries/Released)

Acceptance trials are primarily aimed at demonstrating to INSURV the ability of the ship’s crew to conduct operations at sea, and that the ship is constructed in accordance with contract specifications.

«Congratulations to our Navy and industry team for all the great work that has led us to this exciting milestone», said Rear Admiral Brian Antonio, program executive officer for aircraft carriers. «As a result of much dedication and hard work, delivery of CVN-78 is close at hand, and we are looking forward to commissioning the ship into the fleet this summer».”

Prior to the underway period, INSURV conducted a rigorous set of pierside trials, including more than 200 in-port demonstrations and inspections. The three-day at-sea portion of acceptance trials also included more than 500 INSURV demonstrations and inspections of the ship’s hull, mechanical and electrical systems.

The Navy’s Supervisor of Shipbuilding, Conversion and Repair is responsible for ensuring the ship’s readiness for acceptance trials and presenting the ship to INSURV. The ship’s crew is responsible for operating the ship and conducting tests and demonstrations. INSURV oversees and witnesses the execution of the acceptance trials schedule.

The USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) is the lead ship in the Ford class of aircraft carriers, the U.S. Navy’s first new aircraft carrier design in more than 40 years, which will begin the phased replacement of Nimitz-class carriers when the ship is commissioned. The USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) is designed with significant quality-of-life improvements and reduced maintenance requirements. Several new technologies, such as the Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System, Advanced Arresting Gear, and Dual Band Radar have been incorporated into the Ford’s design. These innovations are expected to improve operational availability and capability, and reduce total ownership cost over its 50-year service life by nearly $4 billion compared with Nimitz-class carriers. CVN-78 honors the 38th president of the United States and pays tribute to his lifetime of service to the nation in the U.S. Navy and in the U.S. government.

Construction of the USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) has been ongoing since 2008, with the island landed in January 2013. The ship was christened in November 2013 by the ship’s sponsor, Susan Ford Bales, daughter of President Ford. The ship’s crew conducted a pierside «fast cruise» in March 2017, and builder’s sea trials occurred in April 2017.

 

General Characteristics

Builder Huntington Ingalls Industries Newport News Shipbuilding, Newport News, Virginia
Propulsion 2 A1B* nuclear reactors, 4 shafts
Length 1,092 feet/333 m
Beam 134 feet/41 m
Flight Deck Width 256 feet/78 m
Flight Deck Square 217,796 feet2/20,234 m2
Displacement approximately 100,000 long tons full load
Speed 30+ knots/34.5+ mph/55.5+ km/h
Crew 4,539 (ship, air wing and staff)
Armament ESSM (Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile), RAM (Rolling Airframe Missile), Mk-15 Phalanx CIWS (Close-In Weapon System)
Aircraft 75+

* – Bechtel Plant Machinery, Inc. serves the U.S. Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program

 

Ships

Ship Laid down Launched Commissioned Homeport
USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) 11-13-2009 11-09-2013
USS John F. Kennedy (CVN-79) 08-22-2015
USS Enterprise (CVN-80)

 

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