The Navy’s newest Virginia-class submarine took to the water in the James River, as the New Jersey left its floating drydock at Newport News Shipbuilding.
Tugs nudged it alongside the shipyard’s submarine pier for final outfitting and testing.
At that pier, shipyard workers will make final refinements over the next several months. Those refinements, testing and certifications are one of the final steps in a process that started with the contract award in 2014 and will end with delivery to the Navy, slated for next year.
It took three days last month to move New Jersey from the shipyard’s cavernous Modular Outfitting Facility to the drydock, traveling the 960 feet on 56 heavy duty sets of railcar wheels. After several weeks there, the sub was ready to get wet.
“We now look forward to executing our waterborne test program, and working toward sea trials so we can deliver to the Navy.” said Jason Ward, Newport News’ vice president of Virginia-class submarine construction.
The New Jersey is the first Virginia-class sub that was designed from the start for a crew of male and female sailors, said Jason Ward, vice president of the shipyard’s Virginia class submarine program.
The 7,800-ton submarine is the 23rd Virginia-class fast-attack submarine, and the 11th boat to be delivered by Newport News Shipbuilding under a partnership with General Dynamics Electric Boat shipyard in Connecticut. Newport News builds the bow, stern, sail and nuclear propulsion sections of the boats, while the two yards alternate final assembly
Dave Ress, 757-247-4535, email@example.com