Skip to comments.Newest Fast-Attack Subs Have No Periscopes Submarines Use Digital Cameras Instead [USS Virginia]
Posted on 10/23/2004 2:32:34 PM PDT by Mike Fieschko
NORFOLK, Va. -- With bells ringing and horns blaring, the Navy on Saturday commissioned the lead ship of its latest class of fast-attack submarines specifically designed for post-Cold War security threats.
The $2.2 billion, nuclear-powered USS Virginia differs from other submarines because it can not only roam the deep blue ocean but also get close to shore in shallow water, which Navy officials say is important in fighting terrorism.
Lynda Robb Johnson, daughter of President Lyndon Johnson and wife of former Sen. Charles Robb, D-Va., gave the traditional order to "man our ship and bring her to life" in ceremonies at Norfolk Naval Station, the world's largest Navy base.
"Aye, aye, ma'am," the crew of about 130 responded. They then raced up both ends of the sub and lined up on deck as a Navy band played "Anchors Aweigh."
The 377-foot-long sub is the first to be built without a periscope, using a high-resolution digital camera instead. That meant the control room, which always had to be directly below the periscope, could be moved to a larger space in the sub's lower deck.
The Virginia also can launch unmanned undersea vehicles. Other improvements include a new computerized autopilot designed to reduce stress on the crew and a reconfigurable torpedo room that can hold extra beds for special operations forces.
In his keynote address, Sen. John Warner, R-Va., said the Virginia will help lead the fight against terrorism.
"We cannot ever blink. We cannot ever flinch. We cannot yield," said Warner, a former Navy secretary. "This ship will very definitely play a role in that war on terror."
The sub is the first of 10 Virginia-class submarines scheduled to be built through a partnership between Northrop Grumman Newport News and General Dynamics Electric Boat.
(Excerpt) Read more at wral.com ...
No screen doors, right?
What! No screen doors!
Hmmm . . . Cool! I'd like to know more about the periscope. They say the Virginia can launch unmanned undersea vehicles . . . Dumb questions: So is the periscope/camera free to surface on its own, untethered to the ship, or is it attached to the sub in the normal way? How deep can the sub be and still deploy the camera? Thanks. I was a foot soldier. I know NOTHING about this naval stuff! :-)
What if the camera should fail for some reason? What is the backup process for taking a look?
Hi-tech bubblehead ping.
First computer generated subs if I remember correctly (CAD) and has internals with rack components so upgrades can be traded in and out.
Looks like a pretty fancy boat.
Cant have a real sub without a periscope.
The most radical change in the Virginia sensor suite appears in the ships control room. The electromagnetic and electro-optics suite will include two no-hull-penetrating Photonics Masts, without a conventional periscope. This is a major break with tradition for the Submarine force. The Virginia class will not have a conventional periscope. The Officer of the Deck will no longer stand and hang-on the periscope, looking through a maze of mirrors, prisms, and lenses. Instead, the Photonics Mast contains several high-resolution, color cameras that send visual images to large screen displays in the ships control room. Equipped with enhanced infrared and low-level light image enhancement features, the mast also includes an infrared laser range finder, making the art of calling periscope ranges much less challenging. Furthermore, the mast will embody an improved integrated Electronic Support Measures (ESM) array and associated signal processing for unparalleled situational awareness all gained covertly from under the sea.
That is one big sumbeach.
Looks good. Our subs didn't have the construction railing on top, and the walkway was not very wide. It's a long way down in drydock.
Cadets at the Coast Guard Acadamy in New London used to take their dates down to the banks of the River Thames to discuss philosophy on hot summer nights. They were unaware that on the other side of the river at the Submarine Base in Groton, Fast Attack Subs had high-tech, night vision periscopes hooked up to TV monitors, thus keeping the entire Duty Section entertained.
Damn, I will take two...park these babies near Iran and see what happens... Live fire exercises/
So that you guys will know, that first pic is that of the advanced sail that will be installed around the 6th or 7th boat of the class.
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