Aug. 28 (UPI) -- A four-year overhaul of the aircraft carrier USS George Washington has reached the halfway point, the U.S. Navy announced.
The Nimitz-class ship, commissioned in 1992, is receiving its "force work package" in its midlife "refueling complex overhaul" at the Huntington Ingalls Industries' shipyard in Newport News, Va. An online blog published by sailors assigned to the carrier and serving as a diary of the repairs said the ship will "leave the shipyard as the world's most technologically-advanced capital warship."
The RCOH includes the overhaul and upgrade of the ship's combat systems and other warfighting capabilities. The nuclear reactors that power the ship will be refueled and its general material condition will be improved. Shipyard employees and Navy personnel are collaborating on the renovations.
"We have the opportunity to do two things every day: solve interesting problems and lead," said Capt. Daryle Cardone, executive officer of USS George Washington. "That's what our Sailors do each and every day they come into the shipyard and aboard our ship. It's the energy and motivation they bring to each challenge that has enabled us to reach this momentous halfway point in the ship's force work package and it's what will drive us to the finish line."
In several months the dry dock holding the 1,092-foot-long vessel will be flooded, making the aircraft carrier waterborne and marking another milestone in the ship's repair process.
The USS George Washington entered the HII dry dock in August 2017 under a $2.7 billion contract. Installation of its mast, regarded in the shipbuilding business as a noteworthy event, occurred in March. Work is expected to be completed by August 2021.