The U.S. Navy‘sÂ USS North DakotaÂ submarine worked alongside three otherÂ Virginia-class submarines to deploy and retrieve unmanned underwater vehicles during a six-week tour in the Mediterranean Sea.
The service saidÂ Monday thatÂ North DakotaÂ — built by General Dynamics‘ Electric Boat subsidiary — joinedÂ the USS Virginia, USS Hawaii and USS New Hampshire in its first-ever mission.
“It was a rare opportunity for the crew to be able to deploy prior to executing its post shakedown availability,” said Capt. Douglas Gordon, commanding officer of USS North Dakota.
Capt. Jim Waters, commander of Submarine Squadron 4, added that the mission also workedÂ to demonstrate the use of UUVs in Submarine Force operations.
USS North Dakota is the first of eightÂ Block III Virginia-class submarines and 11th in the overallÂ Virginia-class submarine fleet.
According to the Navy, the Block III submarines are equipped with theÂ Virginia Payload TubesÂ that are built to carry sixÂ Tomahawk Land Attack Missiles each.