USS KAMEHAMEHA (SSN 642) is a BENJAMIN FRANKLIN class fleet ballistic missile submarine, built in 1965, recently completed conversion to a drydeck shelter/swimmer delivery platform. USS KAMEHAMEHA is now a very capable attack submarine with extensive modifications to enable her to conduct missions in support of special warfare operations.
In March of 1994 USS JAMES K. POLK (SSN 645) completed a 19-month conversion from ballistic missile submarine to attack/special warfare submarine at Newport News Shipbuilding. She then changed homeports to Norfolk where she was a mainstay at Submarine Squadron SIX. As the only dual dry-deck shelter submarine in the U.S. Atlantic Fleet, POLK made three deployments to the Mediterranean Sea. The submarine held its inactivation ceremony 08 January 1999 at Naval Station Norfolk after nearly 33 years of service.The inactivation of the POLK leaves the KAMEHAMEHA (SSN 642) as the Navy's only former ballistic missile submarine equiped with Dry Deck Shelters (DDSs).
|Displacement||8,250 tons submerged|
|Speed||25+ knots submerged|
|Depth||Greater than 800 feet|
|Horizontal Tubes||Four Tubes|
|Vertical Tubes||12 Vertical Launch System Tubes|
|Special Operations|| 2 Dry Deck Shelers|
2 SEAL Delivery Vehicle [SDV]
|Unit Operating Cost|
|~$13,000,000 [source: [FY1996 VAMOSC]|
|Kamehameha||SSN 642||Mare Island NSY||Pearl Harbor||01 Aug 1962||12 Dec 1965|
|James K. Polk||SSN 645||Electric Boat||Norfolk||01 Nov 1962||16 Apr 1966||08 Jan 1999|