Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Virginia-Class Update

In one of the least surprising results ever, the Virginia-class submarine program got the "highest possible ranking" from the Navy's "independent" Operational Test and Evaluation "Force" (COMOPTEVFOR) this month. What interested me in this Navy announcement of the success was some information on what some of the Virginia-class boats are doing now:
"COTF's findings validate what we have known for some time about the Virginia class - that they are ready to become the backbone of the U.S. submarine force," said Vice Adm. John J. Donnelly, commander, Submarine Force. "Virginia and Hawaii have conducted successful deployments prior to their post-shakedown availability (PSA) and New Hampshire is currently deployed. These are the first U.S. submarines to deploy prior to their PSAs, so we had confidence that these ships could operate as advertised, and now we have independent verification."
In its June 2009 IOT&E report, COTF went on to recommend full fleet introduction for the class and commented that "the Virginia-class submarine demonstrated major improvements in littoral environment capabilities" as compared to previous classes of submarine.
Currently, New Hampshire is conducting a deployment prior to its PSA. Additionally, Hawaii is underway to its new homeport in Pearl Harbor, making it the first Virginia to permanently leave Groton, Conn. Texas will follow Hawaii to Pearl Harbor in the fall. Lastly, Virginia is currently working up to its first six-month deployment, which will begin this fall.
So what would have happened had COTF not recommended "full fleet introduction" of the Navy's largest shipbuilding program? I'm guessing "a plague of locusts o'er the land".


Anonymous STSC said...

Oh, yeah they can do great in shallow water...too bad we are headed back to open ocean blue water missions more & more now. If they lose the LAN, Virginia's are toast. Logkeeping fore & aft is alot easier though from my understanding. Whoopdie doo.

I also don't care for the layout of berthing, which makes the passageways in FCB/ACB on a 688i spacious in comparison. Habitability seems to drop further & further down the priority list w/ each new class (minus Ohio's).

If they keep Sonar in Control (I've heard rumors they are swapping Sonar w/ ESM on later hulls) no way I'd ever want to be on one as an ST.

But I guess I'm just a grumpy old Chief resistant to change & not really up on all the new whiz-bang features of the Vagina class.

Reading this before my morning shot of caffeine probably didn't help. I would have liked to see more IPMP boats, but I guess the bean counters just don't see it as being cost effective.

6/25/2009 10:56 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Congrats to SUBRON4 for a fine, fine job.

6/25/2009 12:39 PM

Blogger Scott said...

A lot is riding on the performance of the Virginia-class boats. The Virginia is a showboat to demonstrate what the class is capable of. If I had a nickle for every tour group, VIP Senator, Admiral or Journalist that we drove around the Atlantic in my four years on the boat, I'd have a nuke re-enlistment bonus.

Every time we had a VIP event, the command would stress how important it was for the Virginia-class program for us to succeed.

6/25/2009 2:15 PM

Blogger Srvd_SSN_CO said...

Said it before and I'll say it again: the VA building program is the only warship construction program in the free world that is anywhere close to on budget--and with declining unit prices.

Hats off to the 1120s in the AP world making it happen.

6/26/2009 1:30 AM

Anonymous Veemann said...

Hats off to the 1120s in the AP world making it happen.

Most of the heavy lifting in the VIRGINIA program (and other shipbuilding programs) is done by 1440 Engineering Duty Officers.

6/26/2009 4:18 PM

Blogger T.J. said...

Hats off to them too.

6/26/2009 4:33 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't forget the 3100's support.

6/27/2009 2:11 PM

Anonymous STSC said...

Wonder what is going to happen to the 0-4 reporting to COMOPTEVFOR who recently picked up a DUI blowing 3x the legal limit...

6/27/2009 10:26 PM

Blogger Srvd_SSN_CO said...

I apologize for my inadvertent slight. I offer a deep bow to ALL who are making the VA class the only successful military shipbuilding program in the free world (means everywhere but China).

Truly impressive work.

7/12/2009 8:59 AM


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