July 26, 2019 – USS Michigan (SSGN 727) docked on July 10 to begin a 17-month Extended Refit Period which will end in 2020.
Work during this availability includes battery replacement, structural repair and preservation, shaft replacement, other propulsion plant inspections and improvements, and installation of several new alterations. Critical path work for the ERP will be the structural repairs and preservation of the superstructure and ballast tanks.
Maintenance availabilities are a key element in maintaining an agile and modern fleet that is able to remain on station for long periods, which is especially important for America’s guided missile submarines.
The project team is implementing several process improvement initiatives aimed at reducing time to perform steering and diving grooming, hull valve repairs and structural inspections and repairs. The project team and engineering have analyzed each of the work strings to find opportunities to streamline the process.
“Team Michigan is off to an excellent start,” said Mark Tanner, Michigan project superintendent. “Knowing who our teammates are and effectively communicating will help us refine our integrated plan and lead us to success. We met our initial goal by docking Michigan on time. We are constantly working to improve our safe work environment and focusing on our readiness to start work. I am confident our team will realize outstanding accomplishments over the next 17 months.“
Michigan is one of four Trident-class submarines converted from a ballistic missile system to a guided missile system. The boat’s homeport is Naval Base Kitsap – Bangor.