The lower bow unit for the aircraft carrier, Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) is lifted in place 5/24/2102. The Ford, the first ship in a new class of nuclear-powered carriers is under construction at Newport News Shipbuilding. Photo by Ricky Thompson, Newport News Shipbuilding.

Jan 25, 2012 – The hull of CVN 78 begins to take shape several years into construction. Photo by Chris Oxley

The 825-ton stern superlift for the aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) is lowered into place to complete the ship’s stern on 9/12/2011. Photo by John Whalen, Newport News Shipbuilding.

A composite photo illustration of the aircraft carrier USS John F. Kennedy (CVN 78) at sea. The Kennedy is the second ship in the Ford class of nuclear-powered aircraft carriers under construction at Newport News Shipbuilding.

The aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) is represented here in a combination model and live shot digital photo illustration. The ship, under construction at Newport News Shipbuilding, is the first in a new class of nuclear-powered aircraft carriers for the US Navy. Illustration by Mike Dillard

The aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) is represented here in a combination model and live shot digital photo illustration. The ship, under construction at Newport News Shipbuilding, is the first in a new class of nuclear-powered aircraft carriers for the US Navy. Illustration by Mike Dillard