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New submarine completes initial sea trials

A new Virginia-class submarine being built for the U.S. Navy has completed initial sea trials.

By Richard Tomkins
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New submarine completes initial sea trials
The John Warner, a new Virginia-class submarine, is launched. Photo: Huntington Ingalls Industries.

NEWPORT, R.I., May 27 (UPI) -- The newest Virginia-class nuclear submarine for the U.S. Navy has completed initial sea trials to demonstrate its systems and capabilities.

Huntington Ingalls Industries, who's Newport News Shipbuilding is constructing the vessel, John Warner, in partnership with General Dynamics Electric Boat, said the initial sea trials were completed last Saturday.

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All systems, components and compartments were tested. The submarine submerged for the first time and operated at high speeds under water and on the surface.

"Alpha sea trials represent the first underway test of the quality of the craftsmanship that went into the construction of this great vessel and the skill of the crew that operates her," said Jim Hughes, Newport News' vice president of submarines and fleet support. "Both the ship and the crew performed incredibly well, resulting in extremely successful trials that enable the ship to advance directly into its next set of tests.

"The John Warner is now well on its way to being another successful and early Virginia-class delivery."

Additional trials are scheduled in the coming months.

"The sea trials were a huge success," said Cmdr. Dan Caldwell, the submarine's prospective commanding officer. "The ship is in great material condition, and I could not be more proud of the way the crew performed. They have worked tirelessly for the last two years preparing to take this ship to sea, and it showed during sea trials. We look forward to completing the ship's delivery and joining the operational fleet."

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