Huntington Ingalls Industries recently announced that the Virginia-class submarine Washington (SSN 787) is “pressure hull complete,” signifying that all of the submarine’s hull sections have been joined to form a single, watertight unit.
Washington will be the U.S. Navy’s 14th Virginia-class submarine and the seventh to be delivered by HII’s Newport News Shipbuilding division.
Newport News’ vice president of submarines and fleet support, Jim Hughes said:
Pressure hull complete is the point when the submarine really starts to take its final shape and is the last major construction milestone before christening and delivery next year.
Washington’s construction, which began in September 2011 under a teaming arrangement between Newport News and Electric Boat, marked the beginning of the VCS program’s two-submarines-per-year build plan. The ship is currently 83 percent complete.