U.S. Navy Virginia-Class Submarine Future USS Vermont Completes Alpha Sea Trials

The U.S. Navy’s newest Virginia-class fast attack submarine, the future USS Vermont (SSN 792), has completed her alpha sea trials on March 18, General Dynamics Electric Boat (GDEB) announced.

The future USS Vermont, now Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) Vermont, departed on its first voyage in open seas, called Alpha Sea Trials, on March 15. Alpha sea trials include a range of submarine and propulsion-plant operations, submerging for the first time, and high-speed runs on and below the surface to demonstrate that the ship’s propulsion plant is fully mission-capable.

The future USS Vermont, designated SSN 792, is the third U.S. Navy ship to bear the name of the “Green Mountain State”.

The boat is the 19th Virginia-class attack submarine and the first of ten Virginia-class Block IV submarines. The ship’s construction began in May 2014 and she was christened on Oct. 20, 2018.

Block IV Virginia-class submarines include design changes to Reduce Total Ownership Cost (RTOC) and increase operational availability by decreasing the planned number of depot availabilities from four to three.

Virginia-class submarines are built to operate in the world’s littoral and deep waters while conducting anti-submarine warfare (ASW); anti-surface ship warfare (ASuW); strike warfare; special operation forces (SOF) support; intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR); 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.

Electric Boat and its partner, Huntington Ingalls Industries’ (HII) Newport News Shipbuilding (NNS), share construction of the Virginia-class submarines under a teaming agreement. The 18th Virginia-class submarine, USS Delaware (SSN-791), was delivered to the Navy by HII last year.

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