The Proud Lineage of Enterprise
USS Enterprise (CVN 80) will not be the first ship in the U.S. Navy to bear the name. It will carry the name of the first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier in history – USS Enterprise (CVN 65) – which in turn was named after USS Enterprise (CV 6). CV 6 was the Navy’s sixth aircraft carrier and remains the most decorated warship in U.S. Naval history for its many contributions during World War II. Both CVN 65 and CV 6 were built by Newport News Shipbuilding. In total, CVN 80 will be the ninth Navy vessel to bear the name. The first dates back to 1775, when a British armed sloop was captured and renamed Enterprise during the Revolutionary War.
Of course, the name is also immortalized in science fiction. When the original Star Trek debuted in 1966, the show’s creator Gene Roddenberry was inspired to name the starship USS Enterprise after the world’s first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier CVN 65, commissioned five years earlier in 1961. USS Enterprise (CVN 80) will continue that legacy of inspiring the imagination. The Ford Class was designed with expandable energy capacity for future warfare systems like high-energy lasers.
Newport News shipbuilders are taking tens of thousands of lessons-learned from building Gerald R. Ford, and embracing the challenge of building each consecutive ship in the Ford Class for less.
A Legend Reborn
After more than 50 years of service, the Navy held an inactivation ceremony for USS Enterprise (CVN 65) on Dec. 1, 2012. During the ceremony, Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus announced that the third Ford-class carrier would carry on the name of USS Enterprise.Photo by Chris Oxley / HII