The lead ship of the US Navy’s Virginia-class fast attack submarines returned to her New London homeport in Connecticut following a six-month deployment to Europe.
USS Virginia (SSN 774) was welcomed to the base on February 22 .
During the deployment, Virginia steamed approximately 27,500 nautical miles or 31,650 statute miles and served as ambassadors for the United States, the Navy and the submarine force during port visits to Faslane, Scotland; Rota, Spain and Haakonsvern, Norway.
During the deployment 16 enlisted sailors were advanced, three officers were promoted, 17 silver and five gold dolphins were earned, four crewmembers qualified as pilots, three qualified as engineering watch supervisors, four qualified as the engineering officer of the watch. In addition a crewmember was recognized as Commander, Submarine Squadron Four’s (CSS-4) Junior Officer of the Year for 2017 and as a crew the boat won the CSS-4 Communications/Cyber Green E.
Fast-attack submarines like Virginia are multi-mission platforms enabling five of the six Navy maritime strategy core capabilities – sea control, power projection, forward presence, maritime security and deterrence. The submarine is designed to excel in anti-submarine warfare, anti-ship warfare, special operations, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, to projecting power ashore with special operation forces and Tomahawk cruise missiles in the prevention or preparation of regional crises.
Commissioned on Oct. 23, 2004, Virginia is tenth U.S. Navy ship to be named for the state of Virginia. It is 377 feet long with a beam of 34 feet. Virginia-class, fast-attack submarines have a crew of approximately 132 made up of 15 officers and 117 enlisted sailors.