The Navy is making progress in fixing remaining technical problems with the first Ford-class aircraft carrier (CVN-78) and expects to set a revised delivery date for the ship by year’s end, according to the head of Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA).

The Navy is “just about done getting our way through the root-cause analysis and putting some fixes in place” for a flawed component in the Main Turbine Generators (MTGs), which generate electricity for the ship, said Vice Adm. Thomas Moore, NAVSEA’s commander. In addition, the long-delayed advanced arresting gear (AAG) has trapped aircraft in all 12 attempts so far in recent testing at the Runway Arrested Landing Site in Lakehurst, N.J. And testing continues on the dual-band radar and the advanced weapons elevators. cvn-78

“The rest of the ship is essentially complete,” Moore said during a Nov. 2 media roundtable. “I would expect, before the end of the year, we’ll be able to set a date certain on when we think the ship will be delivered.”

The Navy announced in September that it was re-evaluating the ship’s schedule due to technical “issues” uncovered during testing. Previously, the delivery was delayed from September to November.

Moore told reporters that NAVSEA is working with prime contractor Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) Newport News Shipbuilding to determine why the MTG component had a manufacturing defect and who was responsible.

“In hindsight, you could say, ‘oh, you should have been able to notice that,’” he said. “But as you build these very complex systems, I think that we did due diligence and that it was not something that you were going to easily find upfront.”

Construction of the second Ford-class ship (CVN-79) is now 23 percent complete and is on track to consume 18 percent fewer man hours than CVN-78. The shipbuilder has “learned a lot,” Moore said. “They have taken significant and appropriate steps to learn to have a better plan for putting the ship together. And so far, so good.”