Sturgeon class submarine: Wikis


Note: Many of our articles have direct quotes from sources you can cite, within the Wikipedia article! This article doesn't yet, but we're working on it! See more info or our list of citable articles.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

USS Sturgeon
USS Sturgeon
Class overview
Builders: General Dynamics Electric Boat
General Dynamics Quincy
Ingalls Shipbuilding
Portsmouth Naval Shipyard
New York Shipbuilding
Newport News Shipbuilding
Mare Island Naval Shipyard
Operators: United States of America
Preceded by: Thresher-class submarine
Succeeded by: Los Angeles-class submarine
Built: 1963 – 1975
In commission: 1967 – 2004
Completed: 37
Retired: 37
General characteristics
Displacement: 3,640 long tons (3,698 t) surfaced
4,640 long tons (4,714 t) submerged
Length: 292 ft 3 in (89.08 m)
Beam: 31 ft 8 in (9.65 m)
Propulsion: 1 × S5W Pressurized water reactor
2 × 11.2 MW steam turbines
1 shaft
Speed: 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph)+ surfaced
30 knots (56 km/h; 35 mph)+ submerged
Range: Unlimited, except by food supplies
Test depth: 1,320 ft (400 m)[1]
Complement: 107
Armament: • 4 × 21 in (533 mm) amidship torpedo tubes with MK-48 and ADCAP torpedoes, plus 15 reloads, and 4 Harpoon missiles or up to 8 Tomahawk missiles, instead of equivalent of number of Torpedoes or Harpoons.
In minelaying configuration:
Mark 67 Submarine Launched Mobile Mines and Mark 60 CAPTOR mines instead of torpedoes.

The Sturgeon-class (colloquially in Navy circles, the 637 class) attack submarine (SSN) were the "work horses" of the submarine attack fleet throughout much of the Cold War. They were phased out in the 1990s and early 21st century, as their successors, the Los Angeles, followed by the Seawolf and Virginia class boats, entered service.



They were equipped to carry the Harpoon missile, the Tomahawk cruise missile,and the MK-48 and ADCAP torpedoes. Torpedo tubes were located amidships to accommodate the bow-mounted sonar. The bow covering the sonar sphere was made from poly-carbonate to improve the bow sonar sphere performance though for intelligence gathering missions, the towed-array sonar was normally used as it was much more sensitive array. The sail-mounted dive planes rotate to a vertical position for breaking through the ice when surfacing in Arctic regions.


Several Sturgeon boats were slightly modified from the original designs. Narwhal, which was nearly a sub-class of its own, was completed with an S5G reactor which was cooled using natural convection rather than pumps and did not have reduction gears, but utilized a sophisticated multi-stage turbine in an attempt to reduce the noise footprint from the reduction gears. The turbine arrangement was not considered successful because of its complex warm-up and cooldown procedures.. The Glenard P. Lipscomb was a trials submarine which was completed using a large electric motor for main propulsion rather than direct drive from the steam turbines. The Lipscomb’s trial of electric propulsion was not considered successful due to lack of reliability and she was decommissioned in 1989. The Puffer was outfitted with Raytheon Harmonic Power Conditioners (a.k.a "the cloaking device") which eliminated an electrical bus noise problem that was inherent in the class. This successful prototype was later outfitted on the entire class.


Beginning with Archerfish, units of this class had a 10-foot (3 meter) longer hull, giving them more living and working space than previous submarines. Parche received an additional 100-foot (30 meter) hull extension containing cable tapping equipment that brought her total length to 401 feet (122 m). A number of the long hull Sturgeon-class SSNs, including Parche, Rivers, and Russell were involved in top-secret reconnaissance missions, including cable tap operations in the Barents and Okhotsk seas.

A total of seven boats were modified to carry the SEAL Dry Deck Shelter (DDS). The DDS is a submersible launch hangar with a hyperbaric chamber attached to the ship's weapon shipping hatch. DDS-equipped boats were tasked with the covert insertion of special forces troops.



Short Hull

Long Hull


Two other Navy vessels were based on the Sturgeon hull, but were modified for experimental reasons:


  1. ^ Tyler, Patrick (1986). Running Critical. New York: Harper and Row. pp. 58.  
  • Submarines, War Beneath The Waves, From 1776 To The Present Day, By Robert Hutchinson.

This article includes information collected from the Naval Vessel Register, which, as a U.S. government publication, is in the public domain.

External links


Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address