Huntington Ingalls wins $187.5M contract for USS John C. Stennis overhaul

Seaman Darrell Colon, from Norfolk, Virginia, uses ship's service air to blow water out of pad eyes on USS John C. Stennis' (CVN 74) flight deck.


By HUGH LESSIG | Daily Press (Newport News, Va.) | Published: August 13, 2018

(Tribune News Service) — Planning will begin this month for the mid-life overhaul of the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis, a top-to-bottom refurbishment that will take place at Huntington Ingalls Industries’ Newport News shipyard.

Last week, HII was awarded a $187.5 million advance-planning contract that covers engineering, design, ordering of materials and other work.

The award “allows us to prepare for each step in the overhaul process, from preparing for the ship’s arrival at Newport News to its re-delivery back to the Navy,” said Chris Miner, vice president of in-service carrier programs at the shipyard.

Formally known as a Refueling and Complex Overhaul (RCOH), the ship’s nuclear reactors will be refueled and shipbuilders will work on thousands of compartments and hundreds of tanks.

The multi-billion-dollar job is expected to take about four years and will occur about midway through the aircraft carrier’s 50-year service life.

The RCOH is expected to start in January 2021, said Duane Bourne, a shipyard spokesman.

When the job is finished, the Stennis will be returned to the Navy, ready to serve out its final 25 years.

Newport News Shipbuilding, the only yard that builds nuclear-powered aircraft carriers for the Navy, is also the only place where an RCOH can be done.

The Stennis is currently based at Bremerton, Wash. However, it is scheduled to move to Naval Station Norfolk as part of a three-carrier swap before transferring to the Newport News shipyard.

The Stennis was christened in 1993 and delivered to the Navy in 1995.

It will be the seventh Nimtz-class carrier to undergo an RCOH, which accounts for 35 percent of all maintenance and modernization during a carrier’s service life.

The Stennis will replace the USS George Washington, which is currently undergoing an RCOH at Newport News.

When finished, the GW will head to Yokosuka, Japan, as America’s sole carrier stationed overseas, or “forward deployed,” in Navy parlance.


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