HELENA — PCU Montana, a Virginia-class fast-attack submarine, was delivered to the U.S. Navy on March. 12.
PCU is the designation given to vessels before their official commission into the Navy, it will become the USS Montana after its commission.
Christened on September 12, 2020, Montana (SSN 794) successfully completed its sea trials last month.
The submarine was constructed by Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII). More than 10,000 shipbuilders from Newport News Shipbuilding and Electric Boat have participated in Montana’s construction since the work began in May 2015. She’s more than 370 feet long, 34 feet wide, and about 7,800 tons.
“The delivery of this ship reflects an enormous effort across the Navy and Industry shipbuilding teams,” said CAPT Todd Weeks, the Virginia Class Program Manager who rode the boat during sea trials. “This is an exciting time for the program, Montana’s crew and the Navy. This is the second Virginia Class submarine to deliver in less than a month and it is in excellent condition. Continued deliveries of attack submarines are critical to the Fleet and our National Maritime Strategy.”
Montana is one of the most advanced submarines in the world, sporting advanced stealth capability. The submarine will also be multi-mission-capable, able to deploy and detect mines, launch cruise missiles against land targets, and insert entire platoon-size Navy SEAL special operations teams into dangerous areas, all while submerged.
The new submarine is the second U.S. Navy ship to honor the state. The first USS Montana (ACR-13), an armored cruiser, was also built at Newport News Shipbuilding and commissioned July 1908. She served in the Atlantic and Mediterranean, landed Marines during unrest in Haiti in 1914 and escorted convoys during World War I. She was decommissioned in 1921. Two other battleships (BB 51 and 67) were to have been named Montana however, were canceled in 1922 and 1943 respectively.