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Navy awards huge contract to Newport News shipyard for future USS John F. Kennedy

Posted at 6:53 PM, Jun 06, 2015

Newport News, Va. (WTKR) - The Navy has awarded a multi-billion dollar contract to Huntington Ingalls Industries for the construction of the future USS John F. Kennedy aircraft carrier.

The John F. Kennedy (CVN 79) will be the second in the Gerald R. Ford class of nuclear powered aircraft carriers.

The first steel for the ship was cut in December of 2010.

A $3.35 billion contract was awarded for the detail design and construction of the new carrier and the company also received a $941 million modification to an existing contract for buying materials and manufacturing to support the ship.

All of the work will be performed at Newport News Shipbuilding.

"These awards are important, not only for the shipbuilders at Newport News Shipbuilding, but for the thousands of suppliers nationwide who provide the steel, pipe, cable, paint and equipment that goes into this cutting-edge defense platform—and for the sailors who will sail her," said Mike Shawcross, Newport News Shipbuilding's vice president, John F. Kennedy carrier construction, in a release.

"We look forward to continuing to implement lessons learned from the first-of-the-class ship, Gerald R. Ford, in the construction of Kennedy and delivering the next great carrier to the Navy."

A keel-laying ceremony for the Kennedy is expected to happen on August 22, 2015.