$49M to Goodrich for Virginia-Class Block III Composite Components

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USS Virginia [SSN 774](click to view full) Goodrich in Charlotte, NC received a $49 million contract from Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding to provide composite components for the next 8 Virginia-class nuclear fast attack submarines, referred to as Block III. Goodrich’s Engineered Polymer Products team in Jacksonville, FL is building components to support the construction of 1 sub per year in 2009 and 2010, rising to 2 subs per year from 2011 through 2013. The components include the bow dome, and sonar and weapons equipment. The bow of the Virginia Class Block III underwent significant revision involving 25 changes from previous submarine designs… Block III bow mods(click to view full) The most obvious bow change is the switch from 12 vertical launch tubes, to 12 missiles in 2 tubes that use technology from the Ohio Class special forces/ strike SSGN program. The other big change is switching from an air-backed sonar sphere to a water-backed Large Aperture Bow (LAB) array. For the Virginia Class submarine, Goodrich manufactures a 48,827-pound hydrodynamically shaped bow dome that houses and protects the sonar array. Goodrich said that it is also pursuing contracts to supply composite structures for the Virginia-class Block IV and the Ohio-class replacement submarine. […]

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