Category Archives: Navy

SLBM Facility

Navy leaders and local officials cut the ribbon for a new facility considered vital to the nation’s Submarine Launched Ballistic Missile (SLBM) Program, here, November 1.

The Navy's new Missile Support Facility was formally dedicated at a ribbon cutting ceremony held at Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division (NSWCDD), November 1. The facility features state-of-the-art labs, offices, and equipment for more than 300 NSWCDD Strategic and Computing Systems Department scientists, engineers, and technical experts who develop, test, and maintain the Submarine Launched Ballistic Missile fire control and mission planning software (U.S. Navy illustration/Released)
The Navy’s new Missile Support Facility was formally dedicated at a ribbon cutting ceremony held at Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division (NSWCDD), November 1. The facility features state-of-the-art labs, offices, and equipment for more than 300 NSWCDD Strategic and Computing Systems Department scientists, engineers, and technical experts who develop, test, and maintain the Submarine Launched Ballistic Missile fire control and mission planning software (U.S. Navy illustration/Released)

Three guest speakers – Vice Admiral Johnny Wolfe, U.S. Representative Rob Wittman, and Virginia Delegate Margaret Ransone – described the Missile Support Facility as crucial to the top-priority SLBM program responsible for the bulk of the nation’s nuclear deterrent capability.

«This is quite an honor and privilege the United States Navy bestowed on us with all their priorities and we’re very grateful», said John Fiore, Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division (NSWCDD) technical director, in his welcoming remarks to several hundred government, contractor, and military personnel – mostly SLBM employees in the process of transitioning into the new facility as well as their retired counterparts, including pioneers who were key in establishing the program at Dahlgren.

SLBM systems have provided a reliable, secure strategic deterrent for the nation since 1960.

«From the beginning, the U.S. Navy looked to Dahlgren for solutions», Fiore told the audience while recounting the command’s role in the first launch of a Polaris missile from a submarine – the USS George Washington (SSBN-598) – that accurately struck its target 1,100 miles/1,770 km down range 58 years ago. «As a testament to the high quality of work performed at Dahlgren, the commander of the USS George Washington relayed to President Eisenhower the success of the first submarine launched ballistic missile: ‘Polaris – from the deep to target – perfect’».

Over the years, the Polaris Ballistic Missile Program evolved to the Poseidon Program and then to the Trident Program, each with more stringent requirements.

The facility features state-of-the-art labs, offices, and equipment for more than 300 NSWCDD Strategic and Computing Systems Department scientists, engineers, and technical experts who develop, test, and maintain critical portions for current and future missile systems.

«The men and women of NSWC Dahlgren have stood with us side by side for 60 plus years and will continue to stand with us side by side for the next 66 years», said Wolfe – director of the Navy’s Strategic Systems Programs – in reference to the USS Columbia (SSBN-826) class strategic nuclear submarine program the U.S. Navy anticipates will be in effect until 2084.

The first of 12 Columbia nuclear submarines – designed to replace the Trident missile-armed Ohio-class ballistic missile submarines – is scheduled to begin construction in 2021.

The U.S. Navy has identified the Columbia-class program as its top priority program. Currently, NSWCDD is in the research and development phase of the program. The future submarine is being designed to have a longer service life, better operational availability, and better survivability than its predecessors.

Columbia will serve as a sea-based strategic deterrence while rehosting the Trident II D5(LE) missile system, providing the most survivable leg of the nation’s nuclear triad.

The nuclear triad comprises platforms and weapons that serve as the backbone of U.S. national security. The triad – Ohio-class nuclear submarines, strategic bombers, and land-based intercontinental ballistic missiles – provides the nation with significant deterrent and decisive response capabilities.

«As we’ve gone through Polaris, Poseidon, Trident I, Trident II, and whatever comes after Trident II, we are going to continue to rely on this unique critical skill that you have in this program», said Wolfe. «We know that we can always count on you to deliver».

Dahlgren’s SLBM experts will be able to collaborate more frequently and effectively as they deliver technologies that foster rapid development of SLBM capabilities in addition to the incorporation of new capabilities in existing software.

«The building is really the opportunity and the tool that’s needed for each and every one of you to do the spectacular job that you do», said Wittman, chairman of the House Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee. «We are in an amazing turning of the page in the chapter of our strategic defense in this nation. Our triad is the most resilient and foundational element of what we do to protect this nation and I would argue that our SLBM is the most critical part of that triad».

With almost unlimited cruising range, the triad’s SLBM nuclear submarines are capable of extended submerged operations in the international waters of the world. The Navy’s Fleet Ballistic Missile system provides the U.S. with a powerful deterrent against a global war.

«Today’s ribbon cutting expands our capacity to sustain our weapons system into the future, keeping the U.S. Navy on the cutting edge of weapons systems technology», said Jeff Kunkler, deputy program director for SLBM at Dahlgren in his remarks as master of ceremonies, pointing out the command’s work on the Columbia-class submarine. «We are beginning the planning for a life extension program for the Trident missile. We are also implementing several significant initiatives resulting from the recent Nuclear Posture Review, as we continue to sustain and support the current Fleet».

The Nuclear Posture Review is a legislative-mandated review undertaken by the Department of Defense that outlines U.S. nuclear policy, strategy, capabilities and force posture for the next five to 10 years.

Kunkler recollected the changes he has seen over 37 years at the previous SLBM building, once the most coveted place to work where the satellite and global positioning system programs as well as the command’s computer support division were located.

«We had a Polaris fire control system, a Poseidon fire control system, and, at that time, a brand-new formidable Trident I system», said Kunkler about the capabilities when he started his career in 1981. «We hosted two of the most powerful and modern mainframe computers in the Navy at the time. These computers were used to perform the extensive computations required to calculate the SLBM and satellite trajectories. Each computer occupied several cabinets in large rooms. The only method of human interface was operators feeding in punched cards».

Representing the future at the ceremony were two groups of students – eight Spotsylvania Post Oak Middle School students and 11 King George High School Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC) cadets.

«I think it’s wonderful to see their participation», said Virginia Delegate Margaret Ransone. «We should all enjoy seeing the young people and inspire these young men and women to enter into the defense industry».

After the ceremony, the JROTC cadets along with the Post Oak Middle School students and three of their teachers joined guests and NSWCDD personnel who toured the new facility.

«You take time out of your schedules when you get off work to go out and engage our local students and get them interested in the jobs that you are doing», said Ransone in her speech, regarding NSWCDD scientists and engineers who mentor Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) students in the schools and during the command’s annual STEM summer academy. «The goal is to inspire our youth through robotics, mathematics and the Sea Perch programs, and many times, those students end up competing nationally. Your hope is to inspire them to become innovative scientists and engineers but also to introduce them to the range of work here at Dahlgren so we’re protecting their future».

Certainly, SLBM technological innovation and support is among the range of work available to current and future employees who will continue developing the next generation of submarines under the Columbia Program.

«We envision that this facility will empower our teams with the ability to collaborate real-time, face-to-face, to arrive at mutual understanding of complex strategic products in support of the warfighter», said project lead Kathryn Dawson. «This human interaction, this exchange of diverse ideas, this unleashing of human energy, is vital to the future success of our program».

Patrol Ships

As part of Strong, Secure, Engaged: Canada’s Defence Policy, the Government of Canada is acquiring the Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ships (AOPS) to bolster the Royal Canadian Navy’s capabilities while equipping its women and men with versatile and reliable vessels to complete their vital missions.

The Royal Canadian Navy to receive a sixth Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship
The Royal Canadian Navy to receive a sixth Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship

On November 2, 2018, the Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of National Defence announced that the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) will receive a sixth patrol ship, which will help sustain hundreds of highly-skilled middle class jobs at Irving shipyards.

The Royal Canadian Navy needs a diversified fleet to respond to the challenges it faces today and will face well into the future. The AOPS will patrol Canada’s oceans, including the Arctic, and are perfectly suited for missions abroad to support international partners, humanitarian aid, disaster relief, search and rescue, and drug interdiction.

A sixth patrol ship will greatly increase the capacity of the Royal Canadian Navy to deploy AOPS simultaneously, at home or abroad. Additionally, a fleet of six AOPS will allow our frigates to focus on further tasks, allowing the RCN to use its fleet more effectively.

The Government of Canada is also committed to providing the best economic opportunities for Canadians. Through the National Shipbuilding Strategy, the Government of Canada is providing the Royal Canadian Navy with safe and effective vessels to carry out their missions, while providing meaningful economic opportunities for Canadians.


Quick facts

The decision for a sixth ship was made possible after ensuring adequate funding for the acquisition of the ship, as well as the modified production schedule.

The Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ships will significantly enhance the Canadian Armed Forces’ capabilities and presence in the Arctic, as well as augment their presence on the Atlantic and Pacific coasts, better enabling the Royal Canadian Navy to safeguard Canadian Arctic sovereignty.

The AOPS are highly versatile platforms that can be used on a variety of missions at home and abroad, such as coastal surveillance, search and rescue, drug interdiction, support to international partners, humanitarian aid, and disaster relief.

Three ships are in full production and steel cutting for the fourth ship is planned for this winter.

The first AOPS is now in the water and is expected to be delivered to the Royal Canadian Navy in summer 2019.

Multirole Frigate

According to the post Kosuke Takahashi, correspondent of the magazine IHS Jane’s Defence Weekly, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) announced on 1 November that it has been awarded a contract by the Japanese Ministry of Defense (MoD) to build the first two of four ships of a new class of multirole frigate for the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF).

MHI has been awarded a contract by the Japanese MoD to build the first two of four ships of a new class of multirole frigate (seen here in computer-generated imagery) for the JMSDF (Source: MHI)
MHI has been awarded a contract by the Japanese MoD to build the first two of four ships of a new class of multirole frigate (seen here in computer-generated imagery) for the JMSDF (Source: MHI)

Although MHI did not disclose the value of the contract, the MoD had earmarked JPY92.2 billion (USD816 million) in its budget for fiscal year 2018 for the construction of the two 426-foot/130-meter-long, 42.6-foot/13-meter-wide frigates, which are expected to be handed over to the JMSDF in March 2022.

In August the MoD requested JPY99.5 billion from Tokyo for the construction of the two remaining vessels, with delivery expected to take place in March 2023. However, the contract for these two ships has yet to be awarded.

MHI’s frigate design and proposal were selected over those submitted by Mitsui Engineering and Shipbuilding (MES) and Japan Marine United. MES, however, was chosen to be the subcontractor.

Construction of the first 3,900 tonne ship will take place at MHI’s Nagasaki Shipyard & Machinery Works in Nagasaki Prefecture, while the second one will be built at MES’s Tamano Shipyard in Okayama Prefecture. The arrangement marks the first time that MHI will build a ship as the lead contractor.

According to the MoD, this new frigate class, which is intended to carry out surveillance missions in waters surrounding the Japanese archipelago, will be equipped with enhanced multirole capabilities, including the ability to conduct anti-mine warfare operations, which until now have been performed by the JMSDF’s ocean-going minesweepers.

Armament on the frigates, each of which will be capable of embarking one helicopter as well as unmanned surface and underwater vehicles, is expected to include the navalised version of the Type-03 (also known as the «Chū-SAM Kai») medium-range surface-to-air missile, a 5-inch (127-mm)/62-calibre gun, a Vertical Launch System (VLS), canister-launched anti-ship missiles, and a SeaRAM (Rolling Airframe Missile) close-in weapon system.

Brisbane Joins the Fleet

HMAS Brisbane (DDG-41) is the second of three ships of the Hobart Class guided missile destroyers. Her sister ships will be HMAS Hobart (DDG-39) and HMAS Sydney (DDG-42). The keel of HMAS Brisbane (DDG-41) was laid down on 3 February 2014 and was launched by Mrs. Robyn Shackleton on 15 December 2016.

HMAS Brisbane (DDG-41) at sea during builders trials viewed from her sister ship, HMAS Hobart (DDG-39)
HMAS Brisbane (DDG-41) at sea during builders trials viewed from her sister ship, HMAS Hobart (DDG-39)

HMAS Brisbane (DDG-41) is based on the Navantia designed F100 frigate and is coupled it with the Aegis Combat System. HMAS Sydney (DDG-42) is currently under construction in Australia by the Air Warfare Destroyer Alliance.

HMAS Brisbane (DDG-41) will provide air defence for accompanying ships in addition to land forces and infrastructure in coastal areas, and for self-protection against missiles and aircraft. The Aegis Combat System incorporating the state-of-the-art phased array radar, AN/SPY 1D(V), in combination with the SM-2 missile, will provide an advanced air defence system capable of engaging enemy aircraft and missiles at ranges in excess of 150 km/93 miles.

Brisbane will carry a helicopter for surveillance and response to support key warfare areas. The surface warfare function will include long range anti-ship missiles and a naval gun capable of firing extended range munitions in support of land forces.

Brisbane will also conduct Undersea Warfare and be equipped with modern sonar systems, decoys, surface-launched torpedoes and an array of effective close-in defensive weapons.

These capabilities ensure that the Hobart Class DDGs have the layered defensive and offensive capability required to counter conventional and asymmetric threats.



Length 481.3 feet/146.7 m
Beam 61 feet/18.6 m
Draft 23.6 feet/7.2 m
Full load displacement 7,000 tonnes
Main Engine 36 MW/48,276 hp
Top speed 28+ knots/32 mph/52 km/h
Range at 18+ knots/21 mph/33 km/h 5,000+ NM/5,779 miles/9,300 km
Crew 186
Accommodation 234
Combat System Aegis Weapon System Baseline 7.1
AN/SPY-1D(V) Phased Array Radar (81 NM/93 miles/150 km)
AN/SPQ-9B Horizon Search Radar
Mk-41 Vertical Launch System (48 VLS cells: RIM-162 Evolved SeaSparrow Missile (ESSM)/Standard Missile-2 (SM-2)/SM-6)
Mk-45 Mod.4 5” (127-mm) 62 Calibre Gun (Range: 20 NM/23 miles/37 km)
Advanced Harpoon Weapon Control (2 × 4 launchers)
Electronic Warfare (EW) Suite
Very Short-Range Air and Surface Defence
Nulka Active Missile Decoy system
Integrated Sonar System incorporating a hull mounted and towed array sonar
Communications Suite
Aviation Flightdeck and hangar for one helicopter
Boats Two Rigid Hulled Inflatable Boats (RHIBs)


Squadron 2020

The Defence Forces’ Logistics Command has received a mandate, on 22.10.2018, from Minister of Defence Jussi Niinistö to sign a Letter of Intent with Rauma Marine Constructions (RMC), defining the main principles and preconditions for the construction of the Squadron 2020 corvettes.

Squadron 2020 Project Progresses towards Construction Phase
Squadron 2020 Project Progresses towards Construction Phase

The principles and conditions pertaining to the price of the vessels, financing schedule, division of responsibilities between the parties to the agreement and crisis management were negotiated between the RMC and the Defence Forces’ Logistics Command. With the agreement reached, the actual contract for constructing the vessels is scheduled to be concluded in early 2019.

The contract covers the construction of vessels fit for purpose, their machinery, navigation system and other equipment. A battle system and weapons will be procured separately.

The overall value of the Squadron 2020 project is EUR 1.2 billion, and the construction contract is estimated to account for a half of it.

The final round of tenders will take place during this autumn

The preliminary invitation to tender on the combat system of the Squadron 2020 vessels was sent in summer 2017 to three supplier candidates: Atlas Elektronik GmbH in Germany, Lockheed Martin Canada Inc in Canada and Saab AB in Sweden. The combat system to be delivered will consist of weapons, sensors, command and control systems and their integration into the vessels. The aim is to make an agreement on the combat system at the same time as the agreement to construct the vessels is made.

Bluefin Robotics

General Dynamics Mission Systems today released the new Bluefin-9 autonomous Unmanned Underwater Vehicle (UUV) at Oceans 2018 in Charleston, South Carolina. The completely reengineered vehicle combines high navigational accuracy, outstanding sonar resolution, and precision manufacturing to deliver defense, commercial and academic customers highly-detailed subsurface data in minutes rather than hours. The two-man portable UUV provides the same data collection capabilities of larger UUVs, and can be deployed and recovered from piers, a Rigid-Hulled Inflatable Boat (RHIB) or other vessels of opportunity.

General Dynamics Mission Systems Launches Latest Unmanned Underwater Vehicle at Oceans 2018
General Dynamics Mission Systems Launches Latest Unmanned Underwater Vehicle at Oceans 2018

The Bluefin-9 includes a Removable Data Storage Module (RDSM) which stores high-definition images, video and sonar data that can be accessed within minutes of the vehicle’s recovery. It delivers mission endurance of up to eight hours at a speed of three-knots, and can reach speeds of six-knots and dive to 200 meters/656 feet. Because of its modularity, customers can exchange both the RDSM and battery to redeploy the Bluefin-9 in 30 minutes or less. These capabilities align with environmental surveying, water quality measurement, search and recovery, security, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, and other tactical missions.

«General Dynamics has invested in the redesigned Bluefin-9 and a broad team of engineering experts has made significant improvements to the design, production quality, modularity and reliability of the entire Bluefin Robotics product family to deliver cost-effective UUVs with more mission capability and range», said Carlo Zaffanella, a vice president and general manager of General Dynamics Mission Systems. «We are proud to introduce this first product of a new generation of UUVs, designed to meet the dynamic operational challenges of our defense and commercial customers».

General Dynamics provides an 18-month product warranty on the Bluefin-9, as well as training for UUV operators.

MMP 5th generation

MBDA has unveiled its new naval offering based on the MMP 5th generation ground combat missile at Euronaval. This decision follows the operational evaluation campaign carried out at the end of the summer by the French armed forces in Djibouti to confirm the reliability and operational performance of the Missile Moyenne Portée (MMP – Medium-Range Missile) system in a hot environment, both from the ground and also from a Rigid Hulled Inflatable Boat (RHIB) moving at high speed.

The success of this evaluation allows MBDA to extend the integration perspectives of the MMP system
The success of this evaluation allows MBDA to extend the integration perspectives of the MMP system

A total of nine MMP missiles were fired with all reaching their target. Two of these shots were fired by the maritime force of marines and commandos from a L’Embarcation Commando à Usage Multiple Embarquable (ECUME) RHIB. A first firing from the sea-to-land and the second from sea-to-sea have demonstrated the ease of use of the MMP.

The success of this evaluation allows MBDA to extend the integration perspectives of the MMP system and to propose it on fast attack craft or semi-rigid boats for missions against hostile ships, coastal defenses or armored vehicles, especially in support of a landing of small units or Special Forces.

At Euronaval, the MMP system (firing post and missile) is presented on the Zodiac Milpro booth, installed on a Hurricane type RHIB. On fast patrol boats, the MMP will be fired from a stabilised turret carrying four ready-to-fire ammunitions installed in launchers protecting the missiles from the maritime environment. The turret can be controlled from a dedicated console or from a multifunction console in the ship’s operations center.

Antoine Bouvier, CEO of MBDA, said: «Today’s launch of a family of naval systems based on the MMP missile is aligned with the trajectory we initiated with the French armies at the launch of the MMP program in 2011. By deciding at that time to introduce the most modern technologies of guidance and propulsion together with a multi-effect warhead, we laid the foundations of a family of weapons capable of meeting the most demanding constraints the armed forces may encounter in the field, in terms of tactical effects, in terms of mobility, as well as in environmental terms. The MMP family sees today the advent of naval versions. I have no doubt that the MMP will give birth to other more powerful versions in the near future».

MBDA Introduces Naval Versions of the MMP 5th Generation Missiles System
MBDA Introduces Naval Versions of the MMP 5th Generation Missiles System

Canadian Frigate

The Government of Canada and Irving Shipbuilding Inc. have identified Lockheed Martin Canada Inc. as the preferred bidder to provide the design and design team for the Royal Canadian Navy’s future Canadian Surface Combatants.

Lockheed Wins Canada’s Frigate Tender
Lockheed Wins Canada’s Frigate Tender

While this represents a significant milestone in the competitive process, more work is required before a contract is awarded.

Lockheed Martin Canada Inc. must now go through the «due diligence process», which includes:

  • negotiations with the company on intellectual property rights;
  • an assessment of combat systems performance;
  • an assessment of the company’s financial capability to deliver the project, together with the verification of various other administrative matters.

Should the preferred bidder not successfully demonstrate to Canada and Irving Shipbuilding Inc. that it meets all of the due diligence requirements, then the next highest ranked compliant bidder will become the preferred bidder. The new preferred bidder will then have to successfully demonstrate that it meets all of the due diligence requirements.

The identification of the preferred bidder follows a rigorous bid evaluation process. This process has been, and will continue to be, overseen by an independent Fairness Monitor. To date, the Fairness Monitor has submitted a series of interim reports on the Canadian Surface Combatant procurement process, and each of these reports have not identified any fairness deficiencies.

More recently, the Fairness Monitor provided the following statement to Public Services and Procurement Canada: «As the Fairness Monitor for the Canadian Surface Combatant project, we have monitored the evaluation of proposals submitted in response to the Request for Proposals and have identified no fairness deficiencies. It is our opinion that the evaluation of proposals was conducted in a fair manner. Decisions were made objectively and free from personal favouritism or improper influence, and the process encompassed the elements of openness, competitiveness, transparency and compliance with the Request for Proposals».

A contract award is expected this winter, with construction beginning in the early 2020s.

The Canadian Surface Combatant project is the largest, most complex procurement ever undertaken by the Government of Canada. These ships will form the backbone of our Royal Canadian Navy and will be Canada’s major surface component of maritime combat power for decades to come.

The Government of Canada remains committed to being open and transparent at each stage of the procurement process.

Canadian Surface Combatant

Tamar is launched

The second of the Navy’s next-generation patrol ships makes her debut at sea next month – as the fourth ship entered the water for the first time.

HMS Tamar (P233) is launched as HMS Medway (P223) gears up for maiden voyage
HMS Tamar (P233) is launched as HMS Medway (P223) gears up for maiden voyage

HMS Tamar (P233) became the latest second-generation River-class ship to be officially launched, lowered into the water at BAE System’s Govan yard, then towed three kilometres downstream to the firm’s Scotstoun facility, where fitting out takes place.

There she joins Ship No.3 in the class, HMS Trent (P224), and No.2, HMS Medway (P223), which are both being fitted out.

Medway is days away from completion. She is due to head down Glasgow’s great artery for her maiden voyage in November.

A mixed Royal Navy-civilian crew will put the 2,000-tonne vessel through her paces off the west coast of Scotland after months of training and preparation.

As well as getting used to a new ship fitted with new equipment, the crew – who are split between Portsmouth (warfare/logistics) and the Clyde (weapons/marine engineers) – have been breathing life into the Medway name, visiting the Scottish Legion in Glasgow and the city’s RNR unit Dalriada, and trying their hand at curling and clay pigeon shooting.

The Borough of Medway will be the ship’s affiliate throughout her lifespan and sailors are due to attend a council meeting early in 2019 when the Freedom of the Borough will be bestowed on the vessel.

Despite not being at sea yet – or having raised the White Ensign – the traditions of the Service remain vitally important to Medway’s ethos, from toasting the birth of Prince Louis to recognising stalwarts of the ship’s company, such as communications expert Leading Engineering Technician Paul Guy.

He’s clocked up 25 years of unblemished service in the Royal Navy – a milestone recognised with a bar to his Long Service and Good Conduct Medal.

It was presented not only by his Commanding Officer Lieutenant Commander Hugh Harris but also by comedian and Phoenix Nights’ Ted Robbins – aka Peter Kay’s arch rival Den Perry.

«It was fantastic to be presented with this award in recognition of 25 years in the Navy», said Paul. «To have it handed to me by Den Perry however was something else as I am a huge fan of his and he made this really special».

If the sea trials run as planned, HMS Medway (P223) should move to Portsmouth early in the new year.

«We on HMS Medway (P223) are extremely excited for the challenges ahead and the imminent sea trials – and subsequent first entry into Portsmouth», said Lieutenant Commander Harris. «My ship’s company continue to work hard to meet every future milestone and ultimately fulfil all the responsibilities required of her as she comes into service next year».

By then, HMS Forth (P222) – the lead ship in the second generation of River-class vessels – should be back at sea.

Problems with her have kept HMS Forth (P222) in Portsmouth throughout the summer of 2018, but following rectifications by BAE, her crew are expected to move back on board in November with trials resuming in the second half of January.

The final ship in the class, HMS Spey (P226), is due for launch. All five vessels will perform a mixture of fishery protection work and general maritime security duties in home waters – with the ability, like their first batch of Rivers, to conduct overseas patrol missions as well.

Christening of Vermont

The U.S. Navy christened its newest attack submarine, the future USS Vermont (SSN-792), during an 11 a.m. EDT ceremony Saturday, October 20, 2018, at General Dynamics Electric Boat in Groton, Connecticut.

The Navy christened its newest attack submarine, the future USS Vermont (SSN-792)
The Navy christened its newest attack submarine, the future USS Vermont (SSN-792)

The principal speaker was Vermont Governor Phil Scott. Ms. Gloria Valdez, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Navy (Ships), served as the ship’s sponsor. In a time-honored Navy tradition, she christened the ship by breaking a bottle of sparkling wine across the bow and state, «In the name of the United States, I christen thee».

«The future USS Vermont (SSN-792) honors the contributions and support that the state of Vermont has given to our Navy and Marine Corps team throughout the years», said Secretary of the U.S. Navy Richard V. Spencer. «For decades to come, this boat and the Sailors who will serve on it will stand as a tribute to the patriotic people of Vermont and a testament to the value of the partnership between the Department of the U.S. Navy and our industry teammates».

The future USS Vermont, designated SSN-792, is the third U.S. Navy ship to bear the name of the «Green Mountain State». The first Vermont was one of nine 74-gun warships authorized by Congress in 1816. The ship spent her early life laid up, but was put into service as a store and receiving ship during the Civil War. She continued in that service until struck from the Navy list in 1901. The second Vermont (Battleship No. 20) was laid down in May 1904 and commissioned March 4, 1907. She was a member of The Great White Fleet that conducted a world cruise during the Presidency of Theodore Roosevelt. Later she participated in the American occupation of Vera Cruz, Mexico. During World War I, she served as an engineering training ship before being converted to carry out her final missions as a troop transport, returning about 5,000 World War I U.S. service members from Europe. She was decommissioned June 30, 1920.

The future USS Vermont (SSN-792) is the 19th Virginia-class attack submarine and the first of ten Virginia-class Block IV submarines. The ship’s construction began in May 2014 and it will deliver in the fall of 2019. USS Vermont (SSN-792) will provide the U.S. Navy with the capabilities required to maintain the nation’s undersea superiority well into the 21st century.

Virginia-class submarines are built to operate in the world’s littoral and deep waters while conducting anti-submarine warfare; anti-surface ship warfare; strike warfare; special operation forces support; intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance; irregular warfare; and mine warfare missions. Their inherent stealth, endurance, mobility and firepower directly enable them to support five of the six maritime strategy core capabilities – sea control, power projection, forward presence, maritime security and deterrence.


General Characteristics

Builder General Dynamics Electric Boat Division and Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc. – Newport News Shipbuilding
Date Deployed October 3, 2004
Propulsion One GE PWR S9G* nuclear reactor, two turbines, one shaft; 40,000 hp/30 MW
Length 377 feet/114.8 m
Beam 33 feet/10.0584 m
Hull Diameter 34 feet/10.3632 m
Displacement Approximately 7,800 tons/7,925 metric tons submerged
Speed 25+ knots/28+ mph/46.3+ km/h
Diving Depth 800+ feet/244+ m
Crew 132: 15 officers; 117 enlisted
Armament: Tomahawk missiles Two 87-in/2.2 m Virginia Payload Tubes (VPTs), each capable of launching 6 Tomahawk cruise missiles
Armament: MK-48 ADCAP (Advanced Capability) Mod 7 heavyweight torpedoes 4 torpedo tubes
Weapons MK-60 CAPTOR (Encapsulated Torpedo) mines, advanced mobile mines and UUVs (Unmanned Underwater Vehicles)

* – Knolls Atomic Power Laboratories


Nuclear Submarine Lineup


Block IV

Ship Yard Christening Commissioned Homeport
SSN-792 Vermont EB 10-20-18
SSN-793 Oregon EB Under Construction
SSN-794 Montana NNS Under Construction
SSN-795 Hyman G. Rickover EB Under Construction
SSN-796 New Jersey NNS Under Construction
SSN-797 Iowa EB Under Construction
SSN-798 Massachusetts NNS Under Construction
SSN-799 Idaho EB Under Construction
SSN-800 Arkansas NNS On Order
SSN-801 Utah EB On Order