USS Virginia (SSN-774) Fast Attack Submarine

USS Virginia (SSN-774) Fast Attack SubmarineUSS Virginia (SSN-774) Fast Attack Submarine

The Virginia class submarines are the first class of submarines designed and influenced by the needs of the post Cold War. With the emphasis no longer on the open ocean SLOC (sea lanes of communication) the war against the Warsaw Pact, of Virginia, but is still capable of traditional "blue water" missions deep ocean, focuses on "Coast" missions, including support of special operations, intelligence gathering and operations against mine. Despite carrying the same weapons as their predecessors, the Cold War (and Seawolf class Los Angeles class attack submarines) your weapon loadout is significantly lower (approximately half of the sea lions.) Moreover, when offered Seawolf eight 660mm "swimout" low signature transient torpedo tubes, Virginia is armed with four 533 mm tubes conventional. The Virginias however, are the first class submarine built specifically to incorporate regular use of ROV sensors.

The small size and weapons capability, as well as the incorporation of commercial off the shelf (COTS) equipment for its data processors and related systems are intended to Virginia for a cheaper alternative compared to the Seawolf ($ 1.8b vs. $ 2.0B. Unfortunately, the cost is realized each Virginia-class submarine is now expected that about $ 2.3b, due to economies of scale make profit without production (since the Navy is not the construction U-boat fast enough, they cost more.)

To date, three Virginia-class submarines have been commissioned to active duty. Six others are on order or under construction. The Navy expects to buy at least 30 submarines of this class. The construction of these submarines is split between Electric Boat in Groton and Northrop Grumman Newport News shipbuilding facility in Newport News.