HELENA — The U.S. Navy announced that the USS Montana, a Virginia-class submarine, launched Wednesday in Newport News, VA.
Wednesday's launch brings the USS Montana one step closer to being commissioned into the Navy fleet.
Huntington Ingalls Industries constructed the submarine. According to the company, the Montana had been dry-docked in since October.
In launching, the Montana was submerged and towed to a pier where it will be completed.
It is about 92 percent complete and is expected to be delivered to the Navy following testing and crew certification.
Virginia-class submarines are nuclear-powered fast attack submarines that will replace the Navy's Los Angeles-class submarines as they are retired.
Work began on the USS Montana in 2015. Huntington Ingalls says around 10,000 people and suppliers from all 50 states have contributed to the boat's construction. The Montana is expected to be delivered to the Navy later this year.