US Navy Secretary (SECNAV) Carlos Del Toro has officially revealed the name of the future Virginia-class nuclear-powered attack submarine SSN 808.

The submarine has been named in the honour of the 70th US SECNAV John H Dalton.

The announcement was made during the US Naval Academy’s Submarine Officer Selectee Dinner on 28 February.

Del Toro said: “I couldn’t be prouder to name this future submarine after John Dalton. He served as a proud submariner and as Secretary of the Navy, he took strong and principled stands against sexual assault and harassment and oversaw the integration of female sailors onto combat ships.

“The changes he drove almost thirty years ago are evident in all corners of our Navy today, with women serving on, above, and below the sea. A ship bearing his name brings strength to the crew who will undoubtedly operate it with the courage and dignity of John H Dalton.”

Dalton was a native of Louisiana and started his active naval duties in 1964. In 1969, Dalton left the US Navy service and began his career in private sector.

He was nominated as the SECNAV in 1993 and held the same position until 1998.

The future USS John H Dalton is one of the ten Virginia-class attack submarines to feature Block V upgrades. Vessels with hull number 802 to 811 will have this Block V configuration.

In December last year, the US Navy authenticated the keel for the Virginia-class Block V submarine USS Arizona (SSN 803).

It is currently under construction at General Dynamics Electric Boat’s Quonset Point facility in Rhode Island, US.