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Navy Takes Early Delivery of PCU CALIFORNIA (SSN 781)

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  • Phelps Hobart
    The next major event for USS CALIFORNIA (SSN 781), http://www.public.navy.mil/subfor/csg2/Pages/PCUCalifornia(SSN781).aspx, will be its commissioning October
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 8, 2011
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      The next major event for USS CALIFORNIA (SSN 781), http://www.public.navy.mil/subfor/csg2/Pages/PCUCalifornia(SSN781).aspx, will be its commissioning October 29 in Norfolk, Virginia. The commissioning website (not maintained) is http://www.usscaliforniacommissioning.org. Pacific Central Region President Bonnie Potter, BonnieBBP at aol dot com, has asked that all questions about the commissioning from Navy Leaguers in the region be directed to her.
       
      The Navy League's Hampton Roads Council, http://navyleaguehamptonroads.org, is involved with the ceremony - the primary contact there is Maryellen Baldwin, navyleague at earthlink dot net. The Santa Barbara council, http://www.santabarbaranavyleague.org, has adopted PCU CALIFORNIA (SSN 781) and will continue on supporting her after commissioning. The primary contact within the Santa Barbara Council is Patricia Westberg, pwestbrg at pacbell dot net.
       
      Regretfully for Navy League national directors the reception date and the commissioning date are exactly the same dates that they meet at the NLUS National Convention in Chattanooga, Tennessee.  
       
      Phelps
      Phelps Hobart
      Senior Vice President
      Vice President - USS CALIFORNIA (SSN 781)
      Pacific Central Region, NLUS
       

       
       
         
        

      NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (Nov. 6, 2010) Donna Willard, sponsor of the Virginia-class submarine Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) California (SSN 781), christens the submarine as Jackalyne Pfannenstielm, center, assistant Secretary of the Navy for Energy, Installations and Environment, and Mike Peters, president of Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding, look on. (Photo courtesy of Northrop Grumman/Released)

       
      NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (Nov. 6, 2010) Donna Willard with Miss California 2010 Nicole Johnson and Navy League National President Dan Branch and his wife Kathleen at the christening ceremony.
       

      Navy Takes Early Delivery of PCU CALIFORNIA (SSN 781)
       

      From Naval Sea Systems Command Public Affairs

      NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (NNS) -- The Navy took delivery of PCU California (SSN 781) from Huntington Ingalls Industries – Newport News Shipbuilding (HII–NNS), Aug. 7, more than eight months earlier than the scheduled contract delivery date.

      "The quality and professionalism of our Navy/shipbuilding team is evident in California's outstanding performance during its recent sea trials and early delivery," said Program Executive Officer for Submarines, Rear Adm. David Johnson.

      California required 65 months to build – five months less than the previous submarine, USS New Mexico (SSN 779), delivered by what was then Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding. California, the eighth Virginia-class submarine, is the first delivered under the HII–NNS banner.

      Prior to delivery, California passed a battery of at-sea tests including the Board of Inspection and Survey Trials.

      "California's successful run through each successive sea trial, and its early delivery, means the Navy will add another highly-capable, eagerly-anticipated Virginia-class submarine to the fleet to meet operational demands," said Rear Adm.(Select) Michael Jabaley, Virginia-class program manager. "California, along with her sister ships, will provide unmatched capabilities to the fleet while honoring the proud traditions of her namesake state."

      The next major event for California will be its commissioning Oct. 29 in Norfolk, Va. California's commissioning is the second-to-last major acquisition milestone for the Virginia-class program in 2011. The christening ceremony for PCU Mississippi (SSN 782) will cap off the year this December, in Groton, Conn.

      Virginia-class submarines are designed to dominate the world's littoral and deep waters while conducting anti-submarine; anti-surface ship; strike; special operation forces; intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance; irregular warfare; and mine warfare missions. The inherent stealth, endurance, firepower, and sensor suite of these submarines enable them to support five of the six Maritime Strategy core capabilities – sea control, power projection, forward presence, maritime security, and deterrence.

      For more news from Naval Sea Systems Command, visit
      www.navy.mil/local/navsea.


      USS California to be homeported at the Naval Submarine Base New London

      http://navaltoday.com/2011/05/16/uss-california-to-visit-submarine-base-in-gorton/

      May 15, 2011

      U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal said Friday that the Navy will homeport the recently launched Virginia-class submarine California (SSN-781) at the Naval Submarine Base in Groton.

      “This great news is welcome and well-earned for Connecticut and the men and women who serve the Naval Submarine Base in New London,” Blumenthal said in a statement issued by his office. “This sub assignment attests to the base’s military value and validates our state’s commitment to supporting it. I look forward to visiting the USS California when she arrives.”

      Launched on Nov. 14, 2010, the USS California is the eighth Virginia-class submarine to be built. Blumenthal said the transfer of the submarine to the base for its initial homeport assignment will become effective on Oct. 29. The USS California brings with it 15 officers and 117 enlisted billets, his statement said.


      Submarine California SSN 781 Returns from Successful Sea Trials

      http://navaltoday.com/2011/07/06/usa-submarine-california-ssn-781-returns-from-successful-sea-trials/

      July 7, 2011

      Huntington Ingalls Industries (NYSE:HII) announced today that California (SSN 781), the nation’s newest and most advanced nuclear-powered submarine, returned to the company’s Newport News Shipbuilding division after completing the ship’s first round of sea trials.

      The submarine returned July 2 with a broom on its mast, symbolizing a “clean sweep” and successful sea trial. A Newport News Shipbuilding flag also flew over the submarine to mark the first Virginia-class submarine sea trial since the return of the Newport News Shipbuilding name.

      Sea trials provide an opportunity to test all systems, components and compartments and include submerging for the first time, high-speed runs while on the surface and submerged, and a demonstration of many of the submarine’s other capabilities.

      “Sea trials are a highlight of the shipbuilding process,” said Becky Stewart, vice president for Newport News Shipbuilding’s submarine programs. “A successful sea trial is a major accomplishment and the culmination of several years of work that showcases the skills and craftsmanship of our shipbuilders.”

      California, the eighth ship of the class and named to honor the “Golden State,” is in the final stages of testing at HII’s Newport News shipyard. Upon delivery to the Navy later this year, California will be the most modern and sophisticated attack submarine in the world, providing undersea supremacy well into the 21st century. The keel for California was laid May 1, 2009, and the ship was christened Nov. 6, 2010.

      Newport News Shipbuilding, one of only two shipyards capable of designing and building nuclear-powered submarines, is teamed with General Dynamics Electric Boat to build Virginia-class submarines.

      Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) designs, builds and maintains nuclear and non-nuclear ships for the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard and provides after-market services for military ships around the globe. For more than a century, HII has built more ships in more ship classes than any other U.S. naval shipbuilder. Employing nearly 38,000 in Virginia, Mississippi, Louisiana and California, its primary business divisions are Newport News Shipbuilding and Ingalls Shipbuilding.


      USS California Successfully Completes Trials

      http://navaltoday.com/2011/07/13/uss-california-successfully-completes-trials-uss-philadelphia-retires/

      July 13, 2011

      The USS California (SSN 781) – the Navy’s newest Virginia-class submarine – successfully completed its initial, or Alpha, sea trials July 5, which included diving to test depth, conducting an emergency surfacing and testing the submarine’s propulsion plant. These trials are designed to evaluate the ship’s seaworthiness and operational performance.

      Two days later, Navsea noted that the Norfolk (Va.) Naval Shipyard had formally relieved ex-USS Philadelphia’s (SSN 690) last remaining crewman, officially decommissioning the Los Angeles-class submarine.

      California, the eighth ship of the Virginia class, is on track to be delivered nine months early to the fleet, Navsea officials say. All Virginia-class submarines currently under construction are scheduled to be delivered early, Navsea says.

      California will next undergo Bravo sea trials and the Navy’s Board of Inspection and Survey trials, scheduled for later this month. Built under the teaming agreement by General Dynamics Electric Boat and Huntington Ingalls-Newport News, the submarine will be commissioned this fall in Norfolk.

      “Delivering this ship early will provide another much-needed asset to the fleet ahead of schedule,” says Capt. Michael Jabaley, who was recently selected as rear admiral and Virginia-class program manager.

      Much needed, indeed. The Navy has been pushing its attack submarine fleet to the limit lately, and analysts at the Congressional Research Service and elsewhere have warned that the subs will be even more severely tasked in coming years as the older Los Angeles subs, like the Philadelphia, are decommissioned. Although a ceremonial decommissioning for Philadelphia occurred in August 2010 at Naval Submarine Base New London in Groton, Conn., some crewmembers remained aboard until certain work was accomplished. The sub was officially decommissioned when the last crewman was released June 29, Navsea says.

      There is still quite a bit of work to be done for the Philadelphia. The shipyard is currently preparing the ship for transit, safe storage and eventual recycling. Some key items that will be completed during the inactivation are defueling of the ship; draining, cleaning and preserving all systems; emptying all tanks; and making preparations and adding equipment for towing.

      The shipyard will perform several tests to ensure the ship will be ready for undocking in August – including a battery of tests to certify the equipment used to tow the sub. The ship will be reinspected in late spring before being towed to Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility in Washington state in June for eventual recycling.


      California successfully passes sea trials

      From Team Submarine, Naval Sea Systems Command Public Affairs

      http://www.dolphin-news.com/articles/2011/07/14/news/doc4e1c5d159b872445711502.txt?viewmode=fullstory

      Thursday, July 14, 2011

      WASHINGTON - Future USS California (SSN 781) returned to Newport News, Va., July 2 after successfully completing the its initial sea trials.

      Testing evolutions completed during the ship’s initial, or Alpha, sea trials included diving to test depth, conducting an emergency surfacing and testing the submarine’s propulsion plant.

      The evolutions are designed to evaluate the ship’s seaworthiness and operational performance.

      California, the Navy’s newest Virginia-class submarine, is commanded by Commander Dana Nelson, a native of Clinton, Conn.

      “California’s outstanding performance during Alpha trials is a testament to the quality of the design, the talent of the shipbuilding team and the hard work of Cmdr. Nelson and his crew in getting the ship to this point,” said Rear Admiral (Select) Michael Jabaley, Virginia-class program manager. “Delivering this ship early will provide another much-needed asset to the fleet ahead of schedule.”

      The eighth ship of the Virginia class, California is on track to be delivered nine months early to the fleet. All Virginia-class submarines currently under construction are scheduled to be delivered earlier than their original contract delivery dates.

      California will next undergo Bravo sea trials and the Navy’s Board of Inspection and Survey trials, which will commence in late July 2011. Built under a unique teaming agreement by General Dynamics Electric Boat and Huntington Ingalls-Newport News, the submarine will be commissioned in fall 2011 in Norfolk.

      “The partnership between our shipbuilders and our Navy team has been a key factor in the Virginia class’ success,” said Program Executive Officer Submarines Rear Adm. David Johnson. “The team’s efforts are paying great dividends to the fleet and will allow the U.S. Submarine Force to continue to operate without peer.”

      Virginia-class submarines are designed to dominate the world’s littoral and deep waters while conducting anti-submarine; anti-surface ship; strike; special operation forces; intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; irregular warfare; and mine warfare missions. Their inherent stealth, endurance, firepower and sensor suite directly enable them to support five of the six Maritime Strategy core capabilities.


      Attack Submarines - SSN

       

      Description
      Attack submarines are designed to seek and destroy enemy submarines and surface ships; project power ashore with Tomahawk cruise missiles and Special Operation Forces; carry out Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) missions; support Carrier Strike Groups; and engage in mine warfare.

       

      Background
      With the number of foreign diesel-electric / air-independent propulsion submarines increasing yearly, the
      United States submarine force relies on its technological superiority and the speed, endurance, mobility, stealth, and payload afforded by nuclear power to retain its preeminence in the undersea battlespace.

      There are three classes of SSNs now in service.
      Los Angeles (SSN 688) class submarines are the backbone of the submarine force with 44 now in commission. Thirty-one Los Angeles class are equipped with 12 Vertical Launch System tubes for firing Tomahawk cruise missiles.

      The Navy also has three Seawolf class submarines. Commissioned on
      July 19, 1997, USS Seawolf (SSN 21) is exceptionally quiet, fast, well armed, and equipped with advanced sensors. Though lacking Vertical Launch Systems, the Seawolf class has eight torpedo tubes, which can also fire Tomahawks, and can hold up to 50 weapons in its torpedo room. The third ship of the class, USS Jimmy Carter (SSN 23), has a 100-foot hull extension called the multi-mission platform. This hull section provides for additional payload to accommodate advanced technology used to carry out classified research and development and for enhanced warfighting capabilities.
      The Navy is now building the next-generation SSN, the
      Virginia (SSN 774) class. The Virginia class is tailored to excel in a wide range of warfighting missions. These include anti-submarine and surface ship warfare; special operation forces; strike; intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance; carrier and expeditionary strike group support; and mine warfare. The Virginia class has several innovations that significantly enhance their warfighting capabilities with an emphasis on littoral operations. Virginia class boats have a fly-by-wire ship control system that provides improved shallow-water ship handling. The class has special features to support special operation forces. The torpedo room can be reconfigured to house a large number of special operation forces and all their equipment for prolonged deployments and future off-board payloads. The class also has large lock-in / lock-out chamber for divers. In Virginia class boats, traditional periscopes have been supplanted by two Photonics Masts that house color, high-resolution black and white, and infrared digital cameras atop telescoping arms. With the removal of the barrel periscopes, the ships’ control room has been moved down one deck and away from the hull’s curvature, affording it more room and an improved layout that provides the commanding officer with enhanced situational awareness. Additionally, through the extensive use of modular construction, open architecture, and commercial off-the-shelf components, the Virginia class is designed to remain state of the practice for its entire operational life through the rapid introduction of new systems and payloads.

       

       

       

      General Characteristics, Virginia class

      Builder: General Dynamics Electric Boat Division and Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding - Newport News

      Date Deployed: Commissioned Oct. 23, 2004

      Propulsion: One nuclear reactor, one shaft

      Length: 377 feet (114.8 meters)

      Beam: 34 feet (10.4 meters)

      Displacement: Approximately 7,800 tons (7,925 metric tons) submerged

      Speed: 25+ knots (28+ miles per hour, 46.3+ kph)

      Crew: 134: 14 Officers; 120 Enlisted

      Armament: Tomahawk missiles, twelve VLS tubes, MK48 ADCAP torpedoes, four torpedo tubes.

      Ships:

      USS Virginia (SSN 774), Groton, CT

      USS Texas (SSN 775), Groton, CT

      USS Hawaii (SSN 776), Pearl Harbor, HI

      USS North Carolina (SSN 777), Groton, CT

      USS New Hampshire (SSN 778), Groton, CT

      New Mexico (SSN 779), Groton, CT

      Missouri (SSN 780), No homeport - Commissioning scheduled for July 31, 2010

      California (SSN 781), No homeport - Construction began January 2006.

      Mississippi (SSN 782), No homeport - Construction began December 2006

      Minnesota (SSN 783), No homeport - Construction began February 2008.

      North Dakota (SSN 784), No homeport - Ship named July 15, 2008.

      John Warner (SSN-785), No homeport - Construction began March 2010

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