Rolf Bartschi News

13 Jan 2016

Gerald R. Ford Fitted with 14 Mln Feet of Cable

Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) in November 2013 (Photo by Chris Oxley/HII)

Shipbuilders at Huntington Ingalls Industries’ (HII) Newport News Shipbuilding division have installed more than 14 million feet of electrical and fiber optic cable on the aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78)—enough to reach from Earth to the International Space Station more than 10 times, the shipbuilder said. Gerald R. Ford’s design makes a significant leap to electrical power, according to its builders. With more than 10 million feet of electrical cable and 4 million of fiber optic cable…

19 Nov 2013

Aircraft Carrier Gerald R. Ford Takes First Voyage

The aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) was moved Sunday to Newport News Shipbuilding's Pier 3, where it will undergo additional outfitting and testing for the next 28 months. Photo by Chris Oxley

Huntington Ingalls Industries' (HII) Newport News Shipbuilding (NNS) division launched Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) into the James River for the first time on Sunday. The first-of-class aircraft carrier was moved to the shipyard's Pier 3, where it will undergo additional outfitting and testing for the next 28 months. Gerald R. Ford has been under construction in Dry Dock 12 since November 2009 and was moved about one mile south to the shipyard's Pier 3 with the assistance of six tugboats. The ship will be moored at Pier 3 to complete outfitting and testing.

14 Oct 2013

New US Aircraft Carrier Floated at NNS Yard

CVN Float Out: Photo courtesy of HII

Huntington Ingalls Industries' Newport News Shipbuilding (NNS) division announce that with the push of a dozen buttons, CVN 78, 'Gerald R. Ford', sponsor Susan Ford Bales initiated the flow of more than 100 million gallons of water into the dry dock. Once the dock was flooded and initial afloat testing complete, water was partially pumped out and the ship returned to her keel blocks in anticipation of Ford's christening on Nov. 9. The ship will float again about a week later when it is moved to a pier for outfitting. Ford is scheduled for delivery to the U.S. Navy in 2016.

03 Oct 2013

Newport News Installs Propellers on USN Aircraft Carrier

Lindell Toombs, a Newport News shipbuilder with 41 years of experience, applies a protective coating to one of the four propellers on the aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78). Photo by Chris Oxley

Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) announced that the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) has put on significant weight in the dry dock at its Newport News Shipbuilding division with the installation of four 30-ton bronze propellers. At 21 feet in diameter, each propeller spins to push the aircraft carrier through the water. "Installation of the propellers culminates more than 10 months of focused work by numerous trades in support of installing the underwater shafting," said Rolf Bartschi, NNS' vice president, CVN 78 carrier construction.

15 Aug 2013

Final Aircraft Elevator Installed on U.S. Aircraft Carrier

Newport News Shipbuilding recently installed the final aircraft elevator platform on the aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78). The elevator is used to move aircraft from the hangar bay to the flight deck quickly and safely. Photo by Chris Oxley

Huntington Ingalls Industries announced today that its Newport News Shipbuilding (NNS) division installed the third and final aircraft elevator on the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78). The elevator, which is used to move aircraft from the hangar bay to the flight deck quickly and safely, is located on the starboard side of the ship. It measures 85 feet long and 52 feet wide and weighs 120 tons, akin to a steam locomotive. "The Ford class is designed with three aircraft elevators…

11 Jul 2013

Capsule Placed on U.S. Aircraft Carrier

Photo: Huntington Ingalls Industries

Huntington Ingalls Industries' Newport News Shipbuilding (NNS) division welded a time capsule today inside the flight deck control room of the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78). The time capsule contains items that were placed under the 555-metric ton island during a ceremonial event in January by Susan Ford Bales, the ship's sponsor and daughter of the late president, as well as shipyard and Navy leadership. "This Navy tradition is even more special today because it's happening three days before what would have been President Ford's 100th birthday…

08 May 2013

New US Aircraft Carrier Hull Structure Complete

Last CVN 78 Hull Superlift: Photo credit HII

Huntington Ingalls Industries' Newport News Shipbuilding (NNS) division hoisted the last piece of primary structure onto the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier 'Gerald R. Ford'. The lift was the last of 162 superlifts and brings more than three years of structural erection work to a close. Susan Ford Bales, the ship's sponsor and daughter of the late President Gerald R. Ford and Betty Ford, was unable to participate in the construction milestone but wrote a letter of appreciation to shipbuilders.

15 Apr 2013

Newport News Completes Aircraft Carrier Gerald R. Ford

Photo: Huntington Ingalls Industries

Huntington Ingalls Industries announced that the flight deck of the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford is complete following the addition of the ship's upper bow section at Newport News Shipbuilding. The upper bow extends the overall length of the carrier to its full size, which is 1,106 feet—equal to a 75-story building lying on its side. Weighing 787 metric tons and comprising 19 steel sections, the addition of the upper bow brings Ford to 96 percent structural completion. The carrier construction team began construction on the upper bow unit in December 2011.

19 Dec 2012

Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) Hits the 90 Percent Mark

Huntington Ingalls Industries (NYSE:HII) announced today that its Newport News Shipbuilding (NNS) division has reached 90 percent structural completion in the building of the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78). Shipbuilders successfully added three units to the ship last week. Two of the units were sponsons, which are structures that project from the side of the aircraft carrier hull and provide the space needed for flight deck operations. One of the sponsons was 140 feet long and weighed 391 metric tons, making it one of the largest sponsons to be erected.

08 Oct 2012

Newport News Sets Heaviest Module Yet Aboard Aircraft Carrier

Lifting the Module: Photo credit HII

Huntington Ingalls Industries' Newport News Shipbuilding places a record 1,026-metric ton unit —aboard aircraft carrier 'Gerald R. Ford' (CVN 78). The modular unit, — roughly the weight of six Boeing 747 commercial airplanes, is one of the nearly 500 total structural lifts needed to complete the ship, of which 435 have been completed. The lifts are accomplished using the shipyard's 1,050-metric-ton gantry crane, one of the largest in the Western Hemisphere. "This is the heaviest unit to be moved during the ship's construction and the largest lift our crane has ever made…

25 May 2012

Aircraft Carrier 'Gerald R. Ford' – Lower Bow Keel Section Laid

Lower Bow Unit: Photo credit HII

Huntington Ingalls Industries announce that Newport News Shipbuilding celebrates construction milestone on aircraft carrier 'Gerald R. The  680-metric ton lower bow unit has been joined to the other keel sections that comprise the aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78). It is one of the heaviest superlifts to be placed on the ship. "The lower bow is a distinctive component of an aircraft carrier," said Rolf Bartschi, NNS' vice president of CVN 78 carrier construction. "Its sheer…

15 Sep 2011

Aircraft Carrier: Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) Hits Contstruction Milestone

Newport News Shipbuilding completed an 825-ton superlift on the aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) on Sept. 12. At 90 feet long, 120 feet wide and 30 feet deep, the stern section superlift was among the largest of the 162 that comprise Gerald R. Ford.

Huntington Ingalls Industries, Inc. (NYSE:HII) said that the company's Newport News Shipbuilding (NNS) division placed an 825-ton superlift on the aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) on Sept. 12, completing the ship's stern. Gerald R. Ford is being built using modular construction, a process where smaller sections of the ship are welded together to form large structural units called superlifts. The superlifts are pre-outfitted and lifted into the construction dry dock with the shipyard's 1,050-metric ton crane.

25 Jan 2002

Northrop Grumman Shakes Up NNS Engineering Dept.

Northrop Grumman Corporation's Newport News sector announced the appointment of Matthew J. Mulherin as sector vice president of the CVNX program, which includes design and engineering work associated with the new class of nuclear-powered aircraft carriers for the United States Navy. Mr. Mulherin, 43, is responsible for program management, engineering, production and planning for the CVNX program. "Matt brings to this position a high level of expertise in the nuclear shipbuilding arena and a good understanding of our customer's objectives in the design and engineering of the future class of carriers," said Thomas C. Schievelbein, corporate vice president and president of the Newport News sector. Prior to this promotion, Mr. Mulherin served as program director, CVNX. Mr.

Maritime Reporter E-News subscription

Maritime Reporter E-News is the maritime industry's largest circulation and most authoritative ENews Service, delivered to your Email five times per week

Subscribe for Maritime Reporter E-News