Future USS Gerald R. Ford returns from acceptance sea trials

NORFOLK, Va. – The future USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) returned to Naval Station Norfolk Friday after successfully completing acceptance sea trials.

The first of a new class of aircraft carrier for the Navy, the trials were conducted by the Navy’s Board of Inspection and Survey (INSURV) in the Atlantic Ocean from May 24-26.

Now that the ship has returned, it is in final preparations for delivery.

The trials are primarily aimed at demonstrating the ability of the ship’s crew to conduct operations at sea and to ensure the ship was built in accordance with the contract.

“Congratulations to our Navy and industry team for all the great work that has led us to this exciting milestone,” said Rear Adm. Brian Antonio, program executive officer for aircraft carriers. “As a result of much dedication and hard work, delivery of CVN 78 is close at hand, and we are looking forward to commissioning the ship into the fleet this summer.”

Innovations on the Ford-class of carriers are expected to improved operational availability and capability, reducing total ownership costs over an expected 50-year-life span by $4 billion compared to a Nimitz-class carrier.

Construction on the future USS Gerald R. Ford began in 2008.