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Newport News yard hits two key milestones on George Washington refueling

Newport News Shipbuilding hits two major milestones on refueling and overhaul of USS George Washington (Photo by Matt Hildreth/TNS)
September 27, 2020

Nobody called out “make steam,” but after three years of work on USS George Washington’s steam-driven systems, Newport News Shipbuilding workers are ready to test what they’ve done.

It marks one of two milestones recently hit on the multi-billion dollar refueling and overhaul of the aircraft carrier.

Work on the steam systems included refurbishing or replacing all the Washington’s equipment that is powered by steam.

Testing now focuses on all aspects of the engines that drive the ship and that feed steam to them and to other mechanical equipment. The aim is to certify that everything is in shape for the next 25 years of the Washington’s service.

Shipbuilders have also redone the carrier’s drinking water system, including work on 26 tanks as well as pumps, valves and thousands of feet of pipe.

They reconfigured the system and refurbished the tanks, and now that piping pressure and water quality are tested, to make sure it is safe to drink.

“There is a lot of hard work that goes into getting to this point in the RCOH (refueling and complex overhaul0 where we have steam flowing into the propulsion plant and clean drinking water flowing through the ship’s potable water system,” said Todd West, the overhaul’s program director.

The shipyard built the George Washington, delivering it to the Navy in 1992.

It is the the sixth Nimitz-class carrier to undergo a mid-life refueling and overhaul at the yard, The work is now slated to be completed in 2022.


© 2020 the Daily Press