USS Tennessee (SSBN-734)

USS Tennessee (SSBN-734), an Ohio-class ballistic missile submarine, was the fourth ship and first submarine of the United States Navy to be named for the 16th state. There had also previously been two ships of the Confederate States Navy to bear the name.

Authorized in Fiscal year 1980, the contract to build her was awarded to the Electric Boat Division of General Dynamics Corporation in Groton, Connecticut on January 7 1982 and her keel was laid down on June 9 1986. She was launched on December 13 1986 sponsored by Mrs. Landess Kelso, and commissioned on December 17 1988, with Captain D. Witzenburg in command of the Blue Crew and Captain Kenneth D. Barker in command of the Gold Crew.

SSBN-734 was the first Trident II missile submarine to be commissioned.


Displacement-Surfaced 16,600 tons
Displacement-Dived 18,750 tons
Length 560 ft (170.7 m)
Beam 42 ft (12.8 m)
Draught 36.4 ft (11.1 m)
Speed (Dived) 24 Kts


  • Missiles: Lockheed Trident II (D5) SLBMs with upto 12 MIRVED (Multiple Independently Targetable re-entry Vehicle) nuclear warheads of 100-475 KT.
  • Torpedoes: Four 21 in (533mm) Mk.68; and/or Gould Mk 48 ADCAP (Advanced Capability) launched through bow tubes.
  • Decoys: Eight launchers for Emerson Electric Mk2 torpedo decoys.


Radars: Surface search/Navigation/Fire Control-BPS 15A/H


  • IBM BQQ-6 passive search
  • Raytheon BQS-13 spherical array for BQQ-6
  • Ametek BQS-15 active/passive for close contacts
  • Western Electric BQR-15 (with BQQ-9 signal processor) passive towed array
  • Ratheon BQR-19 Active, for navigation
  • TB-23 towed array EW
  • WLR-8(V)5, WLR-10 ESM

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