USS George Washington Aircraft Carrier Earns Certification for Its Flight Deck

The U.S. Navy’s aircraft carrier USS George Washington (CVN 73) reached a major milestone this week, gaining certification of its flight deck for naval aviation operations. This achievement marks the completion of extensive maintenance work and upgrades to enable the Nimitz-class supercarrier’s return to full mission readiness.

After four years of intensive modernization activities at the Newport News Shipyard in Virginia, the USS George Washington has undergone major system refurbishments to extend its service life. This included resurfacing the entire flight deck, installing advanced arresting gear and modernized catapults, upgrading weapons elevators, and overhauling the carrier’s propulsion plant.

Following these comprehensive repairs and renovations, the USS George Washington embarked on sea trials in September to test the carrier’s upgrades. According to the Navy, the aircraft carrier demonstrated full integration with air wing operations during these trials, including launching and recovering aircraft with its newly modernized equipment.

Rear Admiral James Downey, USN Program Executive Officer for Aircraft Carriers, remarked “Achieving re-certification of the flight deck brings George Washington one step closer to its ultimate return to operations…The Navy and our industry partners are steadfastly committed to ensuring a mission-ready carrier.”

With the flight deck recertification complete, the USS George Washington is on track to return to the fleet in 2024. At that point, it will relieve the USS Nimitz and resume its role as a critical naval asset providing multi-mission capabilities across the globe. The aircraft carrier’s upgrades ensure it will continue making significant contributions to America’s maritime strength.

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