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HII receives contract to design, build second Ford-class carrier


A photo illustration of the aircraft carrier John F. Kennedy (CVN 79). Image credit: HII

NEWPORT (BNS): US shipbuilder Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) has received a contract worth $3.35 billion to design and construct the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier John F. Kennedy (CVN 79) -- the second ship in the Gerald R. Ford class of carriers.

Contract work includes ship construction, ship design activities, engineering services, procurement of materials and hardware to support construction and logistics activities, the shipbuilder announced on June 5.

It also received a $941 million modification to an existing construction preparation contract to continue material procurement and manufacturing in support of the ship.

John F. Kennedy's first steel was cut in December 2010. Since then, more than 450 of the ship's 1,100 structural units have been constructed under a construction preparation contract that will be used to start erecting the ship's hull. The ship's keel-laying ceremony is scheduled for Aug. 22.

The Gerald R. Ford class is being built as the next generation of aircraft carriers for the US Navy, using advanced technology and new design.

The lead ship of the class, USS Gerald Ford (CVN 78), was christened in November 2013 and is scheduled to enter service in 2016. It represents a new class of carrier with a new design, which will be followed by the John F Kennedy and new Enterprise carriers.

All have a similar length of about 330 metres.

The Ford-class design is supposed to allow for 25 per cent more sorties for the fighter jets and helicopters on board, generate more electrical power and produce more fresh water from desalination systems, allowing sailors to take comfortable showers.

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