The U.S. Navy has installed a second advanced weapons elevator to the USS Gerard R. Ford aircraft carrier, also known as CVN-78. The military service said on Wednesday it has accepted the AWE after it completed certification and tests from Huntington Ingalls Industries during the vessel's post-shakedown availability.
Joe Thompson, weapons officer at the USS Gerard R. Ford, said the arrival of the second AWE allows the ship's crew to familiarize with the platform and learn its maintenance processes. The service accelerated the platform's acceptance to accommodate the merge of HII's Newport News Shipbuilding business and Naval Surface Warfare Center's test initiatives. The military service received the first AWE on Dec. 21 and is scheduled to install the eight remaining AWEs before the ship's deployment in July.