The U.S. Navy will commission the lead aircraft carrier of the military branch’s Gerald Ford class during a ceremony that will be held Saturday at Naval Station Norfolk in Virginia.
President Donald Trump will deliver the principal address at the USS Gerald R. Ford commissioning event, the Navy said Thursday.
Adm. John Richardson, chief of naval operations, said the carrier is equipped with new technologies and warfighting systems designed to help transform naval warfare.
“The increased combat power will enable new ways to combine information, ships, aircraft and undersea forces, changing how we operate and fight,” added Richardson, an inductee into Executive Mosaic‘s Wash100 for 2017.
CVN 78 was named after the 38th U.S. president and pays homage to his service in the Navy, government and the country.
Susan Ford Bales, daughter of former President Ford, is the ship’s sponsor.
The Navy estimates the service branch will spend up to $43 billion on the construction of the first three Ford-class vessels to replace Nimitz-class carriers.
Gerald R. Ford carriers are designed with reactor and electric plants, electromagnetic aircraft launch systems, advanced arresting gears, machinery control and integrated warfare systems.