General Dynamics Electric Boat christened on the 1o1th of October the Illinois (SSN 786), the 13th submarine of the U.S. Navy’s Virginia Class. Electric Boat is a wholly owned subsidiary of General Dynamics.
The christening ceremony took place at Electric Boat’s Groton shipyard with the Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus as the ceremony’s principal speaker. First Lady Michelle Obama is the ship’s sponsor and she christened the ship by breaking a bottle of Illinois sparkling wine against the submarine’s bow before an audience of approximately 7,500 people.
USS Illinois will be delivered to the Navy in 2016.
“We are honored to have the First Lady as our sponsor,” said Electric Boat President Jeffrey Geiger. “I’m proud to show her that this submarine is the embodiment of our team, whose innovation, ingenuity and unrelenting work ethic is unmatched.”
Virginia-class submarines are among the most effective platforms in the Navy’s portfolio. These submarines are equipped to wage multi-dimensional warfare around the globe. In addition to anti-submarine, anti-surface ship and counter-mine warfare, Illinois will support surveillance, special operations and covert strike missions.
Electric Boat has established standards of excellence in the design, construction and lifecycle support of U.S. Navy submarines. The company’s primary locations are in Groton, New London, Conn., and Quonset Point, R.I. Its current workforce is approximately 14,000 employees.