US Navy Virginia-class Submarine

The US Navy has christened its newest Virginia-class attack submarine as USS Vermont (SSN 792), making it the first vessel named for Vermont since 1920, following the decommissioning of the second USS Vermont.

US navy secretary Ray Mabus said: "The name USS Vermont has a long history in our navy.

"In honour of the victories on Lake Champlain, following the War of 1812, the first USS Vermont was laid down and became one of our nation’s largest and most powerful ships.

"The second USS Vermont was one of our great battleships in the years before World War I and was one of the ships that led the Great White Fleet around the world."

With the potential to maintain the US’ undersea dominance into the 21st century, the 7,800t, 377ft-long Virginia-class submarines are designed with a reactor plant, which will not require refuelling during the scheduled life of the vessel.

"The name USS Vermont has a long history in our navy."

Catering to the latest mission requirements such as surface-ship warfare, anti-submarine and special operations support, these vessels can ferry the Mark 48 advanced-capability torpedoes, Tomahawk land-attack missiles and unmanned underwater vehicles.

The Virginia-class submarines can also be deployed to execute other missions such as anti-submarine and anti-ship warfare, mine delivery and minefield mapping, in addition to the delivery of special forces and support operations.

USS Vermont, which can cruise at more than 25k when submerged, will be built by General Dynamics / Electric Boat and Newport News Shipbuilding, as part of a $17.6bn contract.

Image: A US Navy Virginia-class submarine. Photo: courtesy of the US Navy, photo by General Dynamics Electric Boat.

Defence Technology