Tag Archives: USS Delaware (SSN-791)

HII launches Delaware

Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) has launched the recently christened Virginia-class submarine USS Delaware (SSN-791) into the water for the first time at the company’s Newport News Shipbuilding division.

The 7,800-ton Virginia-class submarine USS Delaware (SSN-791) was moved out of a construction facility into a floating dry dock using a transfer car system (Photo by Ashley Cowan/HII)
The 7,800-ton Virginia-class submarine USS Delaware (SSN-791) was moved out of a construction facility into a floating dry dock using a transfer car system (Photo by Ashley Cowan/HII)

During a three-day process that began last Wednesday, the 7,800-ton submarine was moved out of a construction facility and into a floating dry dock using a transfer car system. The floating dry dock was submerged, and the submarine was launched into the James River. Once in the water, the boat then was moved to the shipyard’s submarine pier for final outfitting, testing and crew certification.

«Successfully launching Delaware into the water, the first time is a proud moment for the Virginia-class submarine team and the thousands of dedicated shipbuilders involved in constructing the ship», said Dave Bolcar, Newport News’ vice president of submarine construction. «With this significant key event behind us, we look forward to completing construction and sea trials next year so this great warship can join the fleet and defend our nation».

USS Delaware (SSN-791) is the 18th Virginia-class submarine built as part of the teaming agreement with General Dynamics Electric Boat and the ninth to be delivered by Newport News. More than 10,000 shipbuilders from Newport News and Electric Boat have participated in Delaware’s construction since the work began in September 2013. The submarine was christened by Jill Biden, the former Second Lady of the United States and the ship’s sponsor, during a ceremony in October.

Virginia-class submarines, a class of nuclear-powered fast attack submarines, are built for a broad spectrum of open-ocean and littoral missions to replace the Navy’s Los Angeles-class submarines. Virginia-class submarines incorporate dozens of new technologies and innovations that increase firepower, maneuverability and stealth and significantly enhance their warfighting capabilities. These 377-foot/114.8-meter long submarines are capable of supporting multiple mission areas and can operate at submerged speeds of more than 25 knots/28 mph/46.3 km/h for months at a time.

Following testing, USS Delaware (SSN-791) is scheduled to be delivered to the U.S. Navy next year.

Huntington Ingalls launches Virginia Class submarine Delaware

 

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 III

Ship Yard Christening Commissioned Homeport
SSN-784 North Dakota EB 11-2-13 10-25-14 Groton, Connecticut
SSN-785 John Warner NNS 09-06-14 08-01-15 Norfolk, Virginia
SSN-786 Illinois EB 10-10-15 10-29-16 Pearl Harbor, Hawaii
SSN-787 Washington NNS 03-05-16 10-07-17 Norfolk, Virginia
SSN-788 Colorado EB 12-03-16 03-17-18 Groton, Connecticut
SSN-789 Indiana NNS 04-29-17 09-29-18 Groton, Connecticut
SSN-790 South Dakota EB 10-14-17
SSN-791 Delaware NNS 10-20-18

 

Christening of Delaware

The U.S. Navy christened the attack submarine, the future USS Delaware (SSN-791), during a 10 a.m. EDT ceremony Saturday, October 20, 2018, at Newport News Shipbuilding, a division of Huntington Ingalls Industries, in Newport News, Virginia.

Newport News Shipbuilding christened Virginia-class submarine Delaware
Newport News Shipbuilding christened Virginia-class submarine Delaware

The principal speaker was United States Senator Tom Carper from Delaware. Doctor Jill Biden, former second lady of the United States, will serve 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».

«Today’s christening marks an important milestone in the life of the future USS Delaware (SSN-791), moving the submarine from a mere hull number to a boat with a name and spirit», said Secretary of the U.S. Navy Richard V. Spencer. «This submarine honors the contributions and support the state of Delaware has given to our military and will stand as a testament to the increased capabilities made possible through a true partnership between the Department of the Navy and our industry teammates».

The future USS Delaware, designated SSN-791, is the seventh ship to bear the name of «The First State». The first Delaware served in the American Revolution, the second in the Quasi War with France. The third was burned to prevent her from falling into the hands of the Confederate Navy. The fourth served blockading duties through the end of the Civil War. Little is known about the fifth, other than she was a screw steamer that began life with another name before being renamed Delaware on May 15, 1869. The sixth Delaware was a battleship commissioned April 4, 1910, that served in the Atlantic and Caribbean. During World War I, she provided convoy escort and participated in allied naval exercises. She was decommissioned November 10, 1923.

The future USS Delaware (SSN-791) is the 18th Virginia-class attack submarine and the eighth and final Virginia-class Block III submarine. The ship’s construction began in September 2013 and will deliver in 2019. Delaware 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 III

Ship Yard Christening Commissioned Homeport
SSN-784 North Dakota EB 11-2-13 10-25-14 Groton, Connecticut
SSN-785 John Warner NNS 09-06-14 08-01-15 Norfolk, Virginia
SSN-786 Illinois EB 10-10-15 10-29-16 Pearl Harbor, Hawaii
SSN-787 Washington NNS 03-05-16 10-07-17 Norfolk, Virginia
SSN-788 Colorado EB 12-03-16 03-17-18 Groton, Connecticut
SSN-789 Indiana NNS 04-29-17 09-29-18 Groton, Connecticut
SSN-790 South Dakota EB 10-14-17
SSN-791 Delaware NNS 10-20-18

 

Keel laying for Delaware

Dr. Jill Biden, the Second Lady of the United States and sponsor of the Virginia-class submarine USS Delaware (SSN-791), visited Huntington Ingalls Industries’ Newport News Shipbuilding division on April 30 for the submarine’s keel-laying ceremony, during which she declared the keel «truly and fairly laid». The keel laying signifies the ceremonial start of construction for the newest U.S. Navy vessel named for «The First State».

Ship Sponsor Dr. Jill Biden's initials were welded onto a steel plate that will be permanently affixed to the submarine USS Delaware (SSN-791), symbolizing her lifelong relationship with the shipbuilders and crew (Photo by Chris Oxley/HII)
Ship Sponsor Dr. Jill Biden’s initials were welded onto a steel plate that will be permanently affixed to the submarine USS Delaware (SSN-791), symbolizing her lifelong relationship with the shipbuilders and crew (Photo by Chris Oxley/HII)

In her remarks, Biden addressed the crew of Delaware not just as the ship sponsor, but as a military mother and grandmother. «It’s our duty to make sure that you have everything you need to stay safe and do your jobs», Biden said. «You need the very best equipment and advanced technology that we can provide, and soon that will include the USS Delaware, thanks to the ingenuity and skill of the shipbuilders before us».

During the ceremony, Biden’s initials were welded onto a steel plate that will be permanently affixed to the submarine, symbolizing her lifelong relationship with the shipbuilders and crew.

Other ceremony participants included Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe; Senator Thomas Carper, Democratic Party-Delaware; Representative Randy Forbes, Republican Party-Virginia; Representative Bobby Scott, Democratic Party-Virginia; Vice Admiral Joseph Tofalo, commander of Submarine Forces, Submarine Forces Atlantic and Allied Submarine Command; Matt Mulherin, president, Newport News Shipbuilding; and Jeffrey S. Geiger, president, General Dynamics Electric Boat.

In his remarks, McAuliffe addressed the importance of the shipbuilding industry in Virginia. «I want to thank the greatest shipbuilders in the entire world that we have here right at Newport News», McAuliffe said. «No other state can say this: 28,500 shipbuilders – one out of five in the United States of America – are here in the Commonwealth of Virginia».

More than 4,000 shipbuilders support the construction of Delaware. The submarine will be the newest U.S. Navy vessel named for the country’s first state, following the dreadnought battleship USS Delaware (BB-28) that was delivered by Newport News in 1910.

«While Jill Biden’s initials may be the only ones visible today, this submarine also carries with it the names of her shipbuilders», Mulherin said. «Shipbuilders who sign their name to each and every job they perform, shipbuilders who put safety and quality above all else, and shipbuilders who I have the utmost respect for and complete and total confidence in».

Delaware is the final ship of the Block III submarines built under a unique teaming agreement between Newport News and General Dynamics Electric Boat.

«Through the effort of this team, the Virginia program has distinguished itself by setting new standards for cost-effective design and construction and advanced mission capabilities for the Navy», Geiger said. «It’s now a busy time for our team, and we are fortunate to be engaged in a sustained period of increased submarine production. The newest, the Delaware, stands out as a remarkable example of applied and integrated technology, along with the ships of the class that have come before it».

Construction on Delaware began in September 2013. The submarine is about 56 percent complete and is on track for delivery in 2018.

In her remarks, Biden addressed the crew of Delaware not just as the ship sponsor, but as a military mother and grandmother
In her remarks, Biden addressed the crew of Delaware not just as the ship sponsor, but as a military mother and grandmother

 

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 12 individual VLS (Vertical Launch System) tubes or 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

A Virginia-class submarine model marked to represent the USS Delaware (SSN-791)
A Virginia-class submarine model marked to represent the USS Delaware (SSN-791)

 

Nuclear Submarine Lineup

Block I

Ship Yard Christening Commissioned Homeport
SSN-774 Virginia EB 8-16-03 10-23-04 Portsmouth, New Hampshire
SSN-775 Texas NNS 7-31-05 9-9-06 Pearl Harbor, Hawaii
SSN-776 Hawaii EB 6-19-06 5-5-07 Pearl Harbor, Hawaii
SSN-777 North Carolina NNS 4-21-07 5-3-08 Pearl Harbor, Hawaii

EB – Electric Boat, Groton, Connecticut

NNS – Newport News Shipbuilding, Newport News, Virginia

SSN – Attack Submarine, Nuclear-powered

Newport News Shipbuilding's Eric Schmidt installs a pipe hanger in the aft trim tank of the Virginia-class submarine Delaware (Photo by Chris Oxley)
Newport News Shipbuilding’s Eric Schmidt installs a pipe hanger in the aft trim tank of the Virginia-class submarine Delaware (Photo by Chris Oxley)

 

Block II

Ship Yard Christening Commissioned Homeport
SSN-778 New Hampshire EB 6-21-08 10-25-08 Groton, Connecticut
SSN-779 New Mexico NNS 12-13-08 11-21-09 Groton, Connecticut
SSN-780 Missouri EB 12-5-09 7-31-10 Groton, Connecticut
SSN-781 California NNS 11-6-10 10-29-11 Groton, Connecticut
SSN-782 Mississippi EB 12-3-11 6-2-12 Groton, Connecticut
SSN-783 Minnesota NNS 10-27-12 9-7-13 Norfolk, Virginia
The bow unit of Virginia-class submarine Delaware (SSN-791) stands upright in one of Newport News Shipbuilding's submarine facilities (Photo by Chris Oxley)
The bow unit of Virginia-class submarine Delaware (SSN-791) stands upright in one of Newport News Shipbuilding’s submarine facilities (Photo by Chris Oxley)

 

Block III

Ship Yard Christening Commissioned Homeport
SSN-784 North Dakota EB 11-2-13 10-25-14 Groton, Connecticut
SSN-785 John Warner NNS 09-06-14 08-01-15 Norfolk, Virginia
SSN-786 Illinois EB 10-10-15
SSN-787 Washington NNS 03-05-16
SSN-788 Colorado EB Under Construction
SSN-789 Indiana NNS Under Construction
SSN-790 South Dakota EB Under Construction
SSN-791 Delaware NNS Under Construction
Virginia-class infographic
Virginia-class infographic

 

Block IV

Ship Yard Christening Commissioned Homeport
SSN-792 Vermont EB On Order
SSN-793 Oregon EB On Order
SSN-794 Montana NNS On Order
SSN-795 Hyman G. Rickover EB On Order
SSN-796 New Jersey NNS On Order
SSN-797 Iowa EB On Order
SSN-798 Massachusetts NNS On Order
SSN-799 Idaho EB On Order
SSN-800 Arkansas NNS On Order
SSN-801 Utah EB On Order
The concept of the Virginia Payload Module
The concept of the Virginia Payload Module

 

Block V

Ship Yard Christening Commissioned Homeport
SSN-802 (Unnamed)
SSN-803 (Unnamed)
SSN-804 (Unnamed)
SSN-805 (Unnamed)
SSN-806 (Unnamed)
SSN-807 (Unnamed)
SSN-808 (Unnamed)
SSN-809 (Unnamed)
SSN-810 (Unnamed)
SSN-811 (Unnamed)
Nearly 4,000 Newport News shipbuilders have worked on USS Washington (SSN-787). The submarine is on track to be delivered in 2016
Nearly 4,000 Newport News shipbuilders have worked on USS Washington (SSN-787). The submarine is on track to be delivered in 2016

 

Block VI

Ship Yard Christening Commissioned Homeport
SSN-812 (Unnamed)
SSN-813 (Unnamed)
SSN-814 (Unnamed)
SSN-815 (Unnamed)
SSN-816 (Unnamed)

USS Minnesota (SSN-783) got her first taste of the sea in early May 2013 during her sea trials

 

Block VII

Ship Yard Christening Commissioned Homeport
SSN-817 (Unnamed)
SSN-818 (Unnamed)
SSN-819 (Unnamed)
SSN-820 (Unnamed)
SSN-821 (Unnamed)
In Virginia-class SSNs, traditional periscopes have been supplanted by two photonics masts that host visible and infrared digital cameras atop telescoping arms
In Virginia-class SSNs, traditional periscopes have been supplanted by two photonics masts that host visible and infrared digital cameras atop telescoping arms