NEWPORT NEWS, Va., April 21, 2007 (PRIME NEWSWIRE) -- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) christened today the fourth submarine of the Virginia class, North Carolina (SSN 777). As the ship's sponsor, Linda Anne Rich Bowman performed the traditional honor of breaking a bottle of American sparkling wine across the bow of the submarine. Bowman is the wife of retired Navy Admiral and former director of naval nuclear propulsion, Frank L. "Skip" Bowman.
"Three years ago, at the keel laying for this ship, I said that the team of shipyard workers of Newport News and Electric Boat were the real keel and foundation," said Mrs. Bowman. "They still are, and always will be. Because of their dedication and perseverance, look at what we see today."
Vice Admiral John Donnelly, commander, Submarine Force; commander, Submarine Force Atlantic; and commander Allied Submarine Command, was the keynote speaker for the ceremony.
"USS North Carolina will be powerful, graceful and quiet. At her top speed, she will make less noise than most of our submarines do at five knots. Her firepower, stealth and agility are tailored perfectly to meet the maritime challenges of the future," said Donnelly. "She will serve the United States Navy as a powerful force for deterrence and peace around the world to ensure freedom of the seas."
Other participants included Adm. Kirk Donald, director of the naval nuclear propulsion program; Ms. Allison Stiller, deputy assistant secretary of the Navy for ship programs; Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA); Rep. Mike McIntyre (D-NC); John Casey, president of General Dynamics Electric Boat; and Mike Petters, president of Northrop Grumman's Newport News sector.
Members of the Virginia Children's Choir performed for approximately 4,000 guests. Guests included Northrop Grumman Newport News and General Dynamics Electric Boat employees who are building North Carolina and their families, family and friends of the North Carolina crew, U.S. Navy personnel, and government officials.
On May 5, Northrop Grumman Newport News will launch North Carolina into the James River. Once in the water, tugboats will move North Carolina to the shipyard's submarine pier where final outfitting and testing will take place.
The keel for North Carolina was laid on May 22, 2004. North Carolina is slated to be delivered to the Navy this December. Northrop Grumman Newport News is teamed with General Dynamics Electric Boat to build the first 10 ships of the Virginia class.
Northrop Grumman Corporation is a $30 billion global defense and technology company whose 122,000 employees provide innovative systems, products, and solutions in information and services, electronics, aerospace and shipbuilding to government and commercial customers worldwide.
CONTACT: Jennifer Dellapenta Northrop Grumman Newport News (757) 380-3558 Jennifer.Dellapenta@ngc.com