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NNPTC's mission is to prepare safe and trusted Naval nuclear operators ready for follow on prototype training and, ultimately, service in the Fleet.

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     Welcome Aboard

From the inception of the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program, Admiral Hyman G.Rickover recognized that nuclear propulsion plant operators must know more than simply what to do in any given situation: they must understand why. Thus, ever since the first crew of USS NAUTILUS reported to the Bettis Atomic Power Laboratory for nuclear training in July 1952, sailors have received in-depth technical training, both theoretical and actual watch standing experience under instruction. 


The first formal Nuclear Power School was established in New London, Connecticut in January 1956 with a pilot course offered for six officers and fourteen enlisted men. Subsequent locations include Bainbridge, Maryland (1956-1976); Mare Island, California (1958-1976); Orlando, Florida (1976-1998) and its current location, Charleston, South Carolina. In 1986, Nuclear Field ‘A’ School was established in Orlando to provide nuclear in-rate training to Sailors prior to attending Nuclear Power School.


In 1993, the Nuclear Field ‘A’ School and Nuclear Power School were joined to create Naval Nuclear Power Training Command. A move from Orlando, Florida to Charleston, South Carolina began in May 1998 and was completed in January 1999. Construction of the new command allowed Nuclear Field ‘A’ School and Nuclear Power School to be located in the same building.


Despite this training changing locations over the years, the commitment to thorough, detailed understanding of the basics of chemistry, physics, thermodynamics, and plant characteristics has remained its foundation. Many improvements were added to the command to improve each Sailors’ quality of life and training effectiveness. The Bachelor Enlisted Quarters include microwaves and refrigerators along with semiprivate rooms joined by a common bath. The complex also includes a galley, recreation building, and recreation fields conveniently located for the Sailors use. The NNPTC complex is fully manned with over 3,600 students and 480 staff members. Naval Health Clinic Charleston is located across NNPTC Circle from the NNPTC site and is a short walk from the main Rickover Center building.


Currently, the number of sailors trained and qualified as nuclear propulsion plant operators is over 142,000.