The U.S. Navy has recently announced plans to convert four Ohio-class nuclear-powered submarines into Guided Missile submarines or SSGN's armed with tactical missiles and the ability to transport and support special operations forces.
Builders: General Dynamics Electric Boat Division.
Power Plant: One nuclear reactor, one shaft
Length: 560 feet (170.69 meters)
Beam: 42 feet (12.8 meters)
Displacement: 16,764 tons (17,033.03 metric tons) surfaced; 18,750 tons (19,000.1 metric tons) submerged
Speed: 20+ knots (23+ miles per hour, 36.8 +kph)
USS Ohio (SSBN 726) Out of service 29 Oct. 2002 for conversion to SSGN
USS Michigan (SSBN 727) conversion to SSGN scheduled for October 2003
USS Florida (SSBN 728) conversion to SSGN scheduled for October 2003
USS Georgia (SSBN 729) conversion to SSGN scheduled for 2004
Crew: 15 Officers, 140 Enlisted
Armament: Up to 154 Tomahawk missiles each (140 on SOF-configured SSGNs).
Guided Missile Submarines SSGN
These four Ohio-class Trident submarines were previously scheduled for inactivation during Fiscal Years 2003 and 2004. Instead, they are being converted to guided missile submarines (SSGN) over a five-year period ending in 2008. The primary missions of the SSGN will be land attack and Special Operations Forces (SOF) insertion and support. Secondary missions will be the traditional attack submarine missions of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR), battle space preparation, and sea control. These ships will be armed with up to 154 Tomahawk® or Tactical Tomahawk® land attack missiles. They will have the ability to carry and support a team of 66 SOF personnel for up to 90 days as compared to 15 days for a SOF outfitted fast attack submarine (SSN). Clandestine insertion and retrieval of these Special Operations Forces will be enhanced by the ability to host dual dry deck shelters and/or Advanced Seal Delivery System. Each SSGN will be able to conduct a variety of peace-time, conventional deterrent, and combat operations all within the same deployment.
The USS OHIO (SSBN 726) entered the conversion yard on November 15, 2002. On January 14, 2003, USS FLORIDA (SSBN 728) became the first Ohio-class submarine to successfully launch a cruise missile. The launch was made from underwater in the Gulf of Mexico.
Pictured here with SOF conversion, the SSGN launches two Tomahawk land attack missiles at the enemy