This Is How the Navy Is Building Their New Nuclear Supercarrier Class

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This is the Gerald R. Ford aircraft supercarrier. She will be the lead ship of the new class that will eventually replace the Nimitz-class supercarriers. She is also the first carrier to be entirely designed using three-dimensional modeling software.

The video shows how Huntington Ingalls's Newport News shipyard is building it, from keel-laying to launch. It's a extremely complex process, like building an entire city that floats from scratch.

The new supercarriers would be more efficient than the current Nimitz-class ships, with a new flight deck design that has a different layout and structure to handle airplanes more efficiently. The deck also includes Electromagnetic Aircraft Launching System catapults—four of them. The island—the control tower on the side—has been reduced in size and pushed towards the stern of the ship.


She will also have a new nuclear power plant that will require fewer people—two thirds less—and less maintenance, called the A1B reactor. She will use two of them while keeping the same size of the Nimitz.


Once she is finished in 2015, it will be in the fleet for at least the next 50 years. [Huntington Ingalls]