The Virginia-Class new attack submarine is an advanced stealth multimission nuclear-powered submarine for deep ocean anti-submarine warfare and littoral (shallow water) operations.
According to a press release published by Huntington Ingalls Industries on March 3, 2021, the firm announced that the Virginia-class submarine Montana (SSN 794) was launched into the James River at the company’s Newport News Shipbuilding division.
The 7,800-ton submarine, which had been in a floating dry dock since being transferred from a construction facility in October, was submerged and moved by tugboats to the shipyard’s submarine pier, for final outfitting, testing and crew certification.
Through the teaming agreement with General Dynamics Electric Boat approximately 10,000 shipbuilders, as well as suppliers from all 50 states, have participated in Montana’s construction since the work began in 2015. Montana is approximately 92% complete and scheduled to be delivered to the U.S. Navy in late 2021.
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 as they are retired. Virginia-class submarines incorporate dozens of new technologies and innovations that increase firepower, maneuverability and stealth and significantly enhance their warfighting capabilities. These submarines are capable of supporting multiple mission areas and can operate at submerged speeds of more than 25 knots for months at a time.
Virginia-class submarines displace 7,800 tons, with a hull length of 377 feet and a diameter of 34 feet. With VPM, the submarines will displace 10,200 tons and have a length of 460 feet.
The submarines are capable of speeds in excess of 25 knots and can dive to a depth greater than 800 feet while carrying Mark 48 advanced capability torpedoes, Tomahawk land-attack missiles (TLAMs), and unmanned underwater vehicles (UUV).