Huntington Ingalls Industries’ Ingalls Shipbuilding division marked the start of fabrication for the future Aegis-guided missile destroyer Paul Ignatius (DDG 117) yesterday, September 30.
Paul Ignatius, the ship’s namesake, and his wife, Nancy Ignatius, the ship’s sponsor, visited the shipyard to see steel cut for the destroyer.
Paul Ignatius is the 31st Aegis destroyer to be built at Ingalls. The start of fabrication signifies the first 100 tons of steel cut. From this point, shipbuilders will assemble the destroyer using modular construction, where pre-fabricated units are constructed separately and later lifted in place and integrated with other units.
“The start of fabrication begins to bring the ship to life,” said Ingalls’ DDG 51 program manager, George Nungesser. “As we continue to cut steel and assemble this next destroyer, the Ignatius family will play a big role in watching the ship transform from these pieces of steel into the mighty warship it will become, bearing Paul Ignatius’ name.”
Paul Ignatius served as Secretary of the Navy from 1967 to 1969 and was the Assistant Secretary of Defense during President Lyndon B. Johnson’s administration.
Ingalls is building two other destroyers in addition to Paul Ignatius. John Finn (DDG 113) is scheduled to be delivered in 2016, and Ralph Johnson (DDG 114) is scheduled to be delivered in 2017.