Huntington Ingalls Industries has commenced construction on the United States Navy’s Arleigh Burke-class destroyer USS Delbert D Black (DDG 119).
This is the third to destroyer to be built in the timeframe of 2013-2017 under the 5-year procurement contract, and the 32nd Arleigh Burke-class destroyer overall.
"I am excited to see DDG 119 production starting off strong,” said Program Executive Office (PEO) Ships DDG 51 class program manager Captain Mark Vandroff. "This ship will not only honor a great Navy leader, it will serve as a testament to all our current and future senior enlisted leaders of the value the Navy places on their service. My team was greatly honored to have Mrs. Black present at the Start of Fabrication and looks forward to her enthusiasm guiding us during the ship's construction."
The honor he was referring to was towards master chief gunner Delbert Black, a thirty-year veteran of the Navy. The destroyer was named to honor the first MCPON, or Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy. The MCPON acts as an advocate and voice of all sailors and their families, except for discharging responsibilities of the senior enlisted adviser to the chief of naval operations.
Huntington Ingalls will build the ship using a method called modular construction. This means pre-fabricated units are built separately and then lifted in place and integrated with other units. Not exactly Legos for grown-ups, but pretty close to it.
These ships serve many purposes, as they can support carrier battle groups, surface action groups, amphibious groups, and replenishment groups. They are capable of participating in missions such as crisis management, sea control, and power projection. They also provide a solid peacetime presence.
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