NEWPORT NEWS, Va., Nov. 15 (UPI) -- Northrop Grumman has received a $189.2 million contract modification to continue design of a new aircraft carrier for the U.S. Navy.
The USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) is the first ship of the Gerald R. Ford class whose keel was laid Nov. 14, 2009.
Enhancements incorporated into the design of the ship include flight deck changes, improved weapons handling systems and a redesigned island, all resulting in increased aircraft sortie rates.
It will also include new nuclear power plants; increased electrical power generation capacity; allowance for future technologies; and reduced workload for the sailors, translating to a smaller crew size and reduced operating costs for the Navy.
"This planned contract modification is essential to continuing the ship design to support construction," said Mike Shawcross, vice president, Gerald R. Ford-class engineering and CVN 79 construction. "Now that the design is in the three-dimensional product model, our engineering and planning effort is focused on the production of instructions for the shops and ship assembly."