The US Navy’s Ohio-class ballistic missile submarine USS Rhode Island (SSBN 740) has successfully concluded its sea trials following its engineered refuelling overhaul (ERO).
The overhaul and upgrade was carried out for 33 months at the navy’s Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth, Virginia.
ERO is a complex, major shipyard availability during which a submarine is refuelled and revamped to extend its performance lifecycle by more than 20 years.
The at-sea tests, which continued for 15 days, evaluated and assessed every aspect of the vessel’s integrity following the overhaul.
The sea trials were performed to recertify the hull at test depth, while testing and certifying the ship’s tactical weapons and propulsion systems.
USS Rhode Island chief of the boat master chief Yeoman David Wright said: “The crew performed admirably and put in a lot of hard work to battle through sea trials without issues.
“It was a great feeling having the boat out to sea and watching the crew operate underway.”
The US Navy submarine is slated to undergo additional system upgrades and certifications in order to be prepared for a full patrol in approximately one year.
SSBN 740 was laid down on 15 September 1988 by General Dynamics’ Electric Boat Division.
The 560ft-long submarine was launched and commissioned with the US Navy on 17 July 1993 and 9 July 1994, respectively.
With a displacement of approximately 18,750t, the vessel can cruise at a submerged speed of more than 20k, while it can carry 24 missile tubes and four Torpedo tubes.