The Navy awarded
$33.4 million to Raytheon to supply the Naval Warfare Center in Philadelphia with up to 28 electronic throttle control units (ETCU) and auxiliary components in support of the Virginia Class program. The deal has Raytheon provide replacement ETCU hardware, which is currently obsolete and can no longer be efficiently supported. The Virginia Class
are attack submarines. The Navy’s newest undersea warfare platform is designed to seek and destroy enemy subs as well as surface ships. Virginia Class boats can carry up to 24 torpedoes and Tomahawk
cruise missiles. They can be deployed for a wide range of operations including anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface ship warfare, strike warfare, special operations forces support, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, irregular warfare, and mine warfare missions. According to the DoD, the proposed contract includes the hardware fabrication for new construction platforms and all back-fit systems to mitigate parts obsolescence, update and maintain the ETCU technical data package, and design verification testing on limited production units for quality assurance. Work is scheduled to be completed by April 2024.
The bow changes cover the FY 2009-2013 ships, referred to as Block III. SSN 774 Virginia – SSN 777 North Carolina are Block I, and SSNs 778-783 will be Block II. Block III begins with the 11th ship of class, SSN 784. Long lead time component orders began May 22/08, and the submarine is expected to be ready for delivery around 2015. A fuller explanation of Block III’s extensive bow changes, and an accompanying graphic, may be found below – along with contract updates that include additional improvements and sonar development.