ATI Courses is scheduled to present technical training short course Submarines and Anti-Submarine Warfare scheduled to be presented in Columbia, MD on June 21-23, 2011. We think our readers would be interested in the information below.
Designed by Electric Boat, the Virginia-class is being built jointly under a teaming arrangement between Electric Boat and Northrop Grumman Newport News in Virginia. In 1998, the U.S. Navy awarded a $4.2 billion contract for the construction of the first four ships of the class. Virginia is the first of these. Displacing approximately 7,800 tons with a length of 370 feet, Virginia is longer but lighter than the previous Seawolf-class of submarines. The 132-member crew can launch Tomahawk land-attack missiles from 12 vertical launch system tubes and Mark 48 advanced capability torpedoes from four 21-inch torpedo tubes. Virginia will be able to attack targets ashore with accurate Tomahawk cruise missiles and conduct covert long-term surveillance of land areas, littoral waters or other sea forces. Other missions will conduct include anti-submarine and anti-ship warfare, special forces delivery & support, and mine delivery and minefield mapping. With enhanced communications connectivity, Virginia also will provide battle group & joint task force support, with full integration into carrier battle group operations. The Virginia-class submarines surpasses the performance of any current projected threat submarine, ensuring US undersea dominance well into the next century. The Virginia class (or SSN-774 class) of attack submarines are the first US subs to be designed for a broad spectrum of open-ocean and littoral missions around the world. They were designed as a cheaper alternative to the Cold War era Seawolf-class attack submarines, and are slated to replace aging Los Angeles class subs, seventeen of which have already been decommissioned. The Virginias incorporate several innovations. Instead of periscopes, the subs have a pair of extendable “photonics masts” outside the pressure hull. Each contains several high-resolution cameras with light-intensification and infrared sensors, an infrared laser rangefinder, and an integrated Electronic Support Measures (ESM) array. Signals from the masts’ sensors are transmitted through fiber optic data lines through signal processors to the control center. The subs also make use of pump-jet propulsors for quieter operations.