USS West VA
USS WEST VIRGINIA development was based on extensive considerations of all aspects of survivability and capabilities required in a seabased deterrent platformd designed for operations through the next century.
USS WEST VIRGINIA incorporates the new, more quiet machinery that cannot be installed in other fleet ballistic missile submarines because of space and weight constraints. It has an advanced sonar system, comparable to that developed for the United States Navy's newest attack submarines. This sonar suite is capable of providing long-range detection and a more effective capabilities for tracking other ships or submarines.
Key features of USS WEST VIRGINIA include: improved maintainablity, reliability, and availability resulting from modular replacement concepts of major equipment, improved design and incorporation of integrated logistics support.
USS WEST VIRGINIA has additional growth potential to accommodate future technology as it becomes available, both in ship systems and in larger missiles. High patrol speeds will greatly increase ocean operating area, providing the ability to avoid potential enemies, thus enhancing survivability.
The first WEST VIRGINIA was Armored Cruiser No. 5 (ACR-5), which was launched on April 18, 1903, at Newport News Shipbuilding Company and commissioned on February 23, 1905. It was built at a cost of four million dollars.
This WEST VIRGINIA went through both name and title changes. In 1916, the cruiser was renamed HUNTINGTON (in honor of the city in West Virginia), so that the state name could be available for a new battleship. HUNTINGTON was later reclassified as a Heavy Cruiser (CA) when the Navy introduced its ship numbering system in 1920.
As Armored Cruiser No. 5, HUNTINGTON contributed to American naval aviation by conducting important experiments with seaplane and balloon launchings. HUNTINGTON had a catapult device and equipment to accommodate four seaplanes and several balloons to aid in these experiments.
After the signing of the Armistice in 1918, HUNTINGTON was temporarily converted to a troop transport, making numerous trans-Atlantic crossings carrying infantrymen home to the States. Reconverted to the status of warship, HUNTINGTON served as flagship of Flying Squadron One until 1920. During that year, the ship was decommissioned and laid up in reserve in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. In 1930, HUNTINGTON was struck from the Navy List.
The Battleship WEST VIRGINIA (BB-48), the second vessel to bear the name, also bore a number of nicknames such as "Mountaineer Battlewagon'' and "Old Task Force 48." Christened on November 19, 1921, WEST VIRGINIA was commissioned in 1923. This ship was built at a cost of 11.5 million dollars. It was labeled a "super-dreadnought'' because of advances in its naval architecture and design. One of these advances was a three-plane section on its deck and a catapult for launching.
Prior to Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, WEST VIRGINIA had been engaged in a schedule of intensive training in the Hawaiian operating area. The battleship was moored alongside the battleship TENNESSEE (BB-43) in Pearl Harbor when the Japanese attack began. WEST VIRGINIA took several torpedo and bomb hits; despite many attempts to save the battleship, it sank and settled on the harbor bottom on even keel.
In the spring of 1942, WEST VIRGINIA was refloated. The battleship was brought to Puget Sound Naval Shipyard at Bremerton, Washington in 1943 for modernization. In 1944, WEST Virginia was assigned to the U.S. Seventh Fleet where it provided considerable gunfire support in the Philippines in 1944 and 1945. A notable day for the battleship was August 31, 1945; WEST VIRGINIA took the lead of the old battleships entering and anchoring in Tokyo Bay, the capitol of the defeated Japanese.
The ship received five battle stars for service during World War II: Pearl Harbor-Midway, Leyte Operation, Luzon Operation, Iwo Jima Operation, and the Okinawa Operation. WEST VIRGINIA was decommissioned on January 9, 1947, and stricken from the Navy List on March 1, 1959.
USS WEST VIRGINIA (SSBN 736) is the first submarine and the third U.S. Naval ship to bear the name of this state.
|Length: 560 ft|
Hull Diameter: 40 ft
Draft: 36 ft
Displacement (Submerged): 18,750 tons
Missile Tubes: 24
Torpedo Tubes: 4