In early 2015 engineers on a brand-new submarine made a troubling find: A pipe joint near the innermost chamber of its nuclear-powered engine showed signs of tampering.
The defective elbow pipe, used to funnel steam from the reactor to the sub’s propulsion turbines and generators, showed evidence of jury-rigged welding that could’ve been designed to make it appear satisfactory. But the part was already installed, the sub already commissioned.
These defective parts, each probably valued on the order of $10,000 or less, have kept the $2.7 billion attack submarine Minnesota languishing in an overhaul for two years, while engineers attempt to cut out and replace a difficult to reach part near the nuclear reactor. Meanwhile, Navy engineers are scouring aircraft carriers and other submarines for problems and criminal investigators are gathering evidence.
Keep reading this article at: http://www.navytimes.com/story/military/2016/03/27/minnesota-two-years-in-the-yards-virginia-class-attack-sub/81600432/