The Submarine Force Recognizes a New Role in Conventional Warfare
The United States Navy modified four of its oldest Ohio-class ballistic missile submarines to guided missile submarines in response to the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START II) (SSGN). The SSGNs could transport up to 154 Tomahawk land strike missiles, and two of the submarines’ massive vertical cargo tubes were modified into Special Forces lockout chambers. The SSGN Program Office completed the refueling and conversion of the four SSBNs to SSGNs in a little over five years, at a far lower cost and in a fraction of the time required to construct a new platform. The four SSGNs of the Ohio class operate on a fifteen-month cycle that includes a three-month significant repair period followed by an entire year deployed abroad.
Due to its nuclear propulsion can operate covertly for lengthy periods, deploying special personnel and launching cruise missiles. They are expected to get hypersonic missiles soon to bolster their offensive capabilities.