BREMERTON, Wash. —
Declaring the massive overhaul of USS Nimitz (CVN 68) complete on May 27, Puget Sound Naval Shipyard & Intermediate Maintenance Facility celebrated its seventh consecutive early or on-time completion of an aircraft carrier availability.
Nimitz’s docking planned incremental availability (DPIA) ended four days ahead of schedule, completing sea trials on Memorial Day.
“Congratulations to team Nimitz,” said Capt. Howard Markle, PSNS & IMF commander. “You have done a tremendous job in returning Nimitz to the fleet ahead of schedule and within budget. The Nimitz project team, ship’s force and our private sector partners should be incredibly proud of this accomplishment. Completing this challenging and intricately complex task on time is an incredible feat all on its own. Doing it for the seventh time in a row – that’s exceeding all expectations, and it speaks volumes about the professionalism and dedication of our entire shipyard team.”
Prior to the Nimitz availability, PSNS & IMF and its Japan and San Diego detachments completed these six carriers on time or early:
- USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) planned incremental availability, completed on time in San Diego in December 2016.
- USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) selected restricted availability, completed one day early in Japan in May 2017.
- USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) planned incremental availability, completed five days early in Bremerton in August 2017.
- Ronald Reagan selected restricted availability, completed on time in Japan in May 2018.
- Theodore Roosevelt planned incremental availability, completed 25 days early in San Diego in December 2018.
- Ronald Reagan selected restricted availability, completed on time in Japan in May 2019.
The oldest carrier in its class, Nimitz’s DPIA began on March 1, 2018, with an ambitious plan of upgrades and renovations to systems across the ship, including steering components, hull preservation, combat systems equipment, aircraft elevator doors and berthing areas. In all, the team of PSNS & IMF personnel, ship’s force and contractors invested more than 770,000 man-days of work in the project.
Shipyard officials say the Nimitz project success is largely attributable to careful planning that started months before the availability and fully embracing innovative technological solutions. They add that the pace of operations on the Nimitz project, which resulted in the ship departing dry dock in only nine months, permitted USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) to move into Dry Dock 6 on Feb. 28. Carl Vinson is currently undergoing its own DPIA at PSNS & IMF.
“This team has rocked it from start to finish, and I am proud to have worked with such great folks,” said Jerry Moore, PSNS & IMF’s non-nuclear assistant superintendent for the project.