Aircraft Carrier Enterprise Delivery Delayed by 18 Months, Says Navy

The future aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN-80), under construction at HII’s Newport News Shipbuilding in Virginia, will be delivered 18 months later than previously scheduled, now expected in September 2029 instead of March 2028. This delay, revealed in the Navy’s Fiscal Year 2025 budget documents, is attributed to material availability delays and supply chain issues. Additionally, the Navy has postponed the purchase of its next carrier, CVN-82, from FY 2028 to FY 2030. Concerns arise over the impacts of these delays on the supplier base and the potential for increased costs and workforce shortages.

Last year, considerations were made to delay purchases of CVN-82 and CVN-83 due to similar challenges, including workforce shortages and COVID-19 impacts. HII executives have emphasized the importance of a block buy strategy for future carriers to maintain workforce and supplier stability, advocating for advanced procurement funding three years before ship awards. The delay in purchasing CVN-82 could lead to layoffs among suppliers, shift their focus to non-military projects, and potentially impact the construction of other naval vessels. A survey highlights supplier concerns over layoffs and increased costs due to procurement delays. The Navy and HII had previously achieved cost savings through a block buy of CVN-80 and CVN-81, pushing for a similar approach for CVN-82 and CVN-83 pending Congressional approval.