A US nuclear-powered Ohio-class submarine was recently deployed in the Middle East to help prevent the Israel-Hamas war from spiralling into a broader conflict.
- The Ohio class is a class of nuclear-powered submarines currently used by the United States Navy.
- They are the largest submarines ever built for the U.S. Navy.
- The US Navy has a total of 18 Ohio-class submarines, which consist of 14 ballistic missile submarines (SSBNs) and four cruise missile submarines (SSGNs).
- The SSBN submarines are also known as “Trident” submarines and provide the sea-based leg of the U.S. nuclear triad.
- The 14 SSBNs together carry about half of S. active strategic thermonuclear warheads.
- They were designed specifically for extended war deterrence
- The class’s design allows the warship to operate for about fifteen years between major overhauls.
- Each of these submarines is provided with two complete crews, called the Blue Crew and the Gold Crew, with each crew serving typically on 70- to 90-day deterrent patrols.
- They can travel at speeds of 30+ knots and remain submerged indefinitely.
- Each SSBN submarine is armed with up to 24 Trident II submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBM).
- Each SSGN is capable of carrying 154 Tomahawk cruise missiles, plus a complement of Harpoon missiles to be fired through their torpedo tubes.