USS California (SSN-781)

USS California (SSN-781), is the eighth Virginia-class submarine, and the seventh United States Navy ship named for the state of California. The contract to build her was awarded to Newport News Shipbuilding (then called Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co.) in Newport News, Virginia, on 14 August 2003. Construction began in December 2006.[4] California's keel was laid down on 1 May 2009. She was christened on 6 November 2010, sponsored by Donna Willard, wife of Admiral Robert F. Willard.[5] She was launched eight days later, on 14 November 2010.[6]

California is the first Virginia-class submarine built with the advanced electromagnetic signature reduction system; although it will be retrofitted into older submarines of the class.[7]

California was delivered to the Navy on 7 August 2011, eight and a half months ahead of schedule.[8]

The $2.3 billion ship was commissioned on 29 October 2011 in Norfolk, Virginia, with Dana Nelson in command and a crew of 134.[9]

US Navy 120106-N-PN306-001 Cmdr. Dana Nelson, commanding officer of the Virginia-class attack submarine USS California (SSN 781), observes his ship
California pierside at Naval Submarine Base New London in January 2012.
United States
Name: USS California
Namesake: State of California
Awarded: 14 August 2003
Builder: Huntington Ingalls Industries - Newport News Shipbuilding
Laid down: 1 May 2009
Sponsored by: Mrs. Donna Willard
Christened: 6 November 2010
Launched: 14 November 2010
Commissioned: 29 October 2011
Homeport: Groton, Connecticut[1]
  • Silentium Est Aureum
  • ("Silence Is Golden")
Status: Ship in active service
Badge: USS California SSN-781 Crest
General characteristics
Class and type: Virginia-class submarine
  • 7,800 tons light
  • 7,900 tons full
Length: 114.9 m (377.0 ft)
Beam: 10.3 m (33.8 ft)
Propulsion: S9G reactor
Speed: greater than 25 knots (46 km/h)[2]
Range: Essentially unlimited distance; 33 years
Test depth: greater than 800 ft (240 m)[3]
Complement: 134 officers and crew[2]


  1. ^ US Navy homeport
  2. ^ a b "The US Navy -- Fact File". Retrieved 2007-07-05.
  3. ^
  4. ^ "PCU California (SSN 781)". Naval Submarine Forces. Retrieved 2010-11-08.
  5. ^ "Newest Virginia-Class Submarine Christened as Navy Launches Education Event in California". Northrop Grumman and Submarine Group 2 Public Affairs. 6 November 2010. Retrieved 2010-11-08.
  6. ^ "Photo Release -- Northrop Grumman Launches Eighth Virginia-Class Submarine, California (SSN 781)" (Press release). Northrop Grumman News. 14 November 2010. Retrieved 2010-11-16.
  7. ^ GAO-09-326SP Assessments of Major Weapon Programs, page 146
  8. ^ "Submarine California Delivered More Than Eight and a Half Months Ahead of Schedule" (Press release). Huntington Ingalls Industries, Inc. 8 August 2011. Retrieved 30 October 2011.
  9. ^ Vergakis, Brock (29 October 2011). "Navy commissions nuclear submarine USS California". Associated Press (AP). Retrieved 30 October 2011.

External links

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.