NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (AP) -- Another milestone is being marked in the construction of the Navy's newest aircraft carrier.
Huntington Ingalls Industries says it is placing the final primary hull structure on the USS Gerald R. Ford on Tuesday.
Shipbuilders are set to lift the forward end of a catapult onto the aircraft carrier. Officials say the lift is the last of 162 superlifts and brings more than three years of structural work to a close.
Construction of the Ford began in November 2009 at Newport News Shipbuilding.
The Ford is the lead ship in a new class of carriers. It features a new nuclear power plant, a redesigned island, electromagnetic catapults, improved weapons movement and an enhanced flight deck.
The Ford will replace the USS Enterprise, which was inactivated last year.
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