US Navy has christened its Virginia-class attack submarine, SSN 801, as the USS Utah in honour of the history its namesake state has had within the navy.
The attack submarine is the second naval vessel to have been named after Utah, with the first being the battleship BB-31, deployed in 1911.
The Virginia Class submarines are manufactured by General Dynamics‘ Electric Boat Division and Huntington Ingalls Industries’ Newport News Shipbuilding division.
SSN 801 is the last of the ten submarines that form part of the Block IV of the class.
USS Utah has a displacement of 7,800t, hull length of 377ft, and a diameter of 34ft.
The Virginia-class submarines can cruise at speeds of over 25k, while diving to more than 800ft deep, and featuring improved stealth, sophisticated surveillance capabilities, and special warfare enhancements.
With the capability to target and terminate enemy submarines and surface ships, the class is designed to cater to the navy’s multi-mission requirements.
The nuclear submarine carries Tomahawk missiles, 12VPT tubes, MK48 ADCAP torpedoes and four torpedo tubes.
They undertake Intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) missions, support battle group operations, and engage in mine warfare.
Utah will be built by General Dynamics in Groton, Connecticut.
Approximately 28 Virginia-class submarines have either been delivered, are in construction, or are under contract with the US Navy. The submarines will replace Los Angeles class submarines after their retirement.
Image: US Navy Secretary Ray Mabus announces the name of USS Utah. US Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Armando Gonzales.