The A4W designation stands for:
- A = Aircraft carrier platform
- 4 = Contractor's fourth core design generation
- W = Westinghouse, the contracted designer
These nuclear fission pressurized water reactors (PWRs) were jointly designed by Bettis Atomic Power Laboratory and Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory and built by Westinghouse Electric Company. Their reactor cores are expected to operate for about 20 years. The only ships to use these nuclear reactors are the Nimitz class supercarriers, which have two reactors rated at 550MWt each. These each generate enough steam to produce an 100 MW electricity supply plus 140,000 shaft horsepower (104 MW).
- "A4W". US Navy Propulsion Systems. Federation of American Scientists. 1999-02-27. Archived from the original on 25 September 2006. Retrieved 2006-10-16.
current cores for the NIMITZ Class aircraft carrier ... last on average about 20 years<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
- "US Navy Propulsion Systems". Federation of American Scientists. Archived from the original on 9 October 2006. Retrieved 2006-10-16.
power per reactor ... 140,000 shp<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
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http://mragheb.com/NPRE%20402%20ME%20405%20Nuclear%20Power%20Engineering/Nuclear%20Marine%20Propulsion.pdf (correcting for the power output from 500 megawatts to 105.)