The US Navy has taken delivery of its twentieth Virginia Class attack submarine, the future USS Oregon (SSN 793).
Delivered by General Dynamics Electric Boat (GDEB) on February 26, pre-commissioning unit (PCU) Oregon is the eleventh Virginia-class boat delivered by the company and the second Block IV configured submarine. The first Block IV boat entered service in 2020 with the commissioning of USS Vermont.
In addition to GDEB, the nuclear-powered attack boats are co-produced at Huntington Ingalls Industries – Newport News Shipbuilding (HII-NNS) through a long-standing teaming agreement.
“Oregon is in excellent condition and the captain and crew have expertly taken the ship through her paces,” said CAPT Todd Weeks, the Virginia-class Program Manager who rode the boat during its sea trials. Delivery of a Virginia-class submarine is the culmination of almost 10 million work hours by the shipbuilders under the exacting standards imposed by Naval Sea Systems Command and Naval Reactors under the direct oversight of the Supervisors of Shipbuilding at both company locations. “Each organization works tirelessly with the others focused on getting ships to sea as the first step in ultimately arriving at its Squadron and homeport where it becomes a vital asset to the nation.”
Virginia-class submarines are built to operate in the world’s littoral and deep waters while conducting anti-submarine warfare; anti-surface ship warfare; strike warfare; special operations forces support; intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; irregular warfare; and mine warfare missions. Their 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.
The submarine’s sponsor is Mrs. Dana Richardson, wife of former Chief of Naval Operations, ADM John Richardson.
Oregon is the third US Navy ship to honor the state. The first USS Oregon was a brigantine ship purchased in 1841 and used for exploration until 1845. The second Oregon (BB 3) was commissioned on July 15, 1896. While decommissioned in 1906, she was later recommissioned in 1911 and remained in the reserve, until stricken from the Navy list in 1942.
As a Block IV boat, future USS Oregon will require three major maintenance periods instead of its predecessors’ four, putting in an extra deployment during its service life.