USS San Francisco Undocks With New Bow

Story Number: NNS081020-01Release Date: 10/20/2008 8:20:00 AM
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From Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility Public Affairs

PUGET SOUND, Wash. (NNS) -- USS San Francisco (SSN 711) returned to the water Oct. 10 after successfully undocking at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility (PSNS & IMF), a field activity of Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA).

The dry-docking resulted from the submarine's Jan. 8, 2005, collision with an undersea mountain. The challenging, one-of-a-kind project involved PSNS & IMF cutting more than one million pounds of ex-USS Honolulu (SSN 718) forward ballast tanks/sonar sphere and attaching it to USS San Francisco. The engineering and production teams proceeded to manipulate the mammoth structure with orchestrated precision. In some areas, the bow of this massive structure was moved to within 1/16 of an inch of the original structure.

San Francisco returned to Apra Harbor, Guam, under her own power where a Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard-led team of engineers and production personnel began the task of assessing the damage, dismantling the wreckage, designing and installing structural and mechanical repairs to prepare her for return to the U.S. mainland. This temporary repair was followed by an unprecedented 5,600-nautical mile open ocean submarine surface transit to PSNS & IMF.

The submarine entered dry dock at PSNS & IMF Dec. 5, 2006, to begin the restoration period. In the early stages, the temporary bow of the San Francisco was disassembled in place and the steel recycled. Later, PSNS & IMF was authorized to define and execute the complete availability to restore the rest of the ship's systems and bow restoration.

During the process, Cmdr. John Lund, superintendent of the project, expressed his pride in the restoration work.

"We continue to press forward through tough circumstances and overcome those obstacles," said Lund. "That says a lot about the team effort involved in this project."

PSNS & IMF is one of four public shipyards that play a major role in maintaining America's fleet and providing wartime surge capability to keep the nation's ships ready for combat. For NAVSEA, serving customers in the fleet is the top priority.

For more news from Naval Sea Systems Command, visit

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