Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Patrol Boats across the Pacific converge to help Vanuatu

Lieutenant Commander Semisi Tapueluelu stands on the deck of the Tongan Patrol Boat Voea Neiafu in Mala Wharf, Port Vila, Vanuatu.   (photo: CAPT Jessie Platz)
Lieutenant Commander Semisi Tapueluelu stands on the deck of the Tongan Patrol Boat Voea Neiafu in Mala Wharf, Port Vila, Vanuatu.

April 1, 2015 - The international response to the crisis in Vanuatu has been nothing short of exemplary, with immediate contributions from countries like Australia, New Zealand, France, USA, UAE and South Korea.  
But now even more support has arrived from smaller nations like Fiji, Solomon Islands and Tonga.
Fiji has embedded a 12-man medical team in Tanna Island and a 30-man engineer element in Efate Province, while the Solomon Islands and Tonga have each sent a Pacific Patrol Boat to provide a niche capability in the wake of Tropical Cyclone Pam. 
Commander of the Tongan Patrol Boat Voea Neiafu, Lieutenant Commander Semisi Tapueluelu said his 21-man team will deliver humanitarian aid to locals in hard to reach places.
“The main tasks we are looking at are transportation of humanitarian relief to the outlying islands, particularly the ones that don’t have an airstrip or a wharf,” he said.
“Pacific Patrol Boats are so effective in missions like this because we can get close to the islands, we have more space to move, and we have local knowledge of the waters.”
Under the Defence Cooperation Program, Australia provided 22 Pacific Patrol Boats to 12 Pacific Island countries in the 1980s and 1990s. 
The boats are now owned by the Pacific Island countries, but the Australian Department of Defence continues to provide ongoing maintenance and logistic support for the boats and training for crews in Australia and within the region. 
Lieutenant Commander Tapueluelu has experienced the full effect of the program; he joined the Tongan Navy in 1995 and completed several training courses at the Australian Maritime College in Tasmania and is a graduate of the Australian Command and Staff College.  
“I am so proud to be here, it’s an opportunity to work with Australia again and of course New Zealand, the French, the Solomon Islands and the Fijians; it’s really good to get everyone to work together during an incident like this, we are very lucky to be invited,” Lieutenant Commander Tapueluelu said.  
“The more we work together, the more that we get to understand our friends and their roles, it will be easy to play our part and add to the overall effort.”
Solomon Islands Patrol Boat Auki is currently in the Shepherd Islands delivering crop seeds and planting material, as well as transferring women, children, the elderly and the disabled back to Port Vila until their homes have been reconstructed.  
The Tongan Voea Neiafu began tasking on 28 March.
“It will absolutely be a special moment for me and my team; we in the Pacific have experienced natural disasters for so many years now,” Lieutenant Commander Tapueluelu said.  
“Standing there with no one to turn to and then seeing all this help right in front of you, we are so proud of ourselves because saving one life is so important, and when they need it, we are there.”

Ingalls Shipbuilding Awarded $499.8 Million Construction Contract for Eighth NSC

Pascagoula March 31, 2015 - Huntington Ingalls Industries' Ingalls Shipbuilding division has received a $499.8 million fixed-price incentive contract from the U.S. Coast Guard to build an eighth National Security Cutter, Midgett (WMSL 757).
"We are performing extremely well in this program, proving the point that serial production is the most efficient and effective way to build complex military ships," said Jim French, Ingalls' National Security Cutter program manager. "We continue to fold in learning for each ship we build, and the three under construction right now are tracking well because of this knowledge."
Ingalls has delivered four National Security Cutters to the Coast Guard and currently has three more under construction: James (WMSL 754), Munro (WMSL 755) and Kimball (WMSL 756). These ships will be delivered in 2015, 2016 and 2018, respectively. Midgett is scheduled to deliver in 2019.
National Security Cutters, the flagships of the Coast Guard's cutter fleet, are designed to replace the 378-foot Hamilton-class high-endurance cutters, which entered service during the 1960s. NSCs are 418 feet long with a 54-foot beam and displace 4,500 tons with a full load. They have a top speed of 28 knots, a range of 12,000 miles, an endurance of 60 days and a crew of 120.

Raytheon receives $109 million for SM-6, SM-2 parts

Tucson March 31, 2015 - The U.S. Navy awarded Raytheon Company $109,583,490 million to purchase the long-lead materials needed to meet Standard Missile-6 full-rate production requirements and Standard Missile-2 sustainment. This award was booked in the first quarter 2015.
SM-6 is a surface-to-air supersonic missile capable of successfully engaging manned and unmanned aerial vehicles and fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft. It also defends against land-attack and anti-ship cruise missiles in flight.
The SM-6 deployed for the first time in 2013, and Raytheon has delivered more than 160 missiles. The missile's final assembly takes place at Raytheon's state-of-the-art SM-6 and SM-3 all-up-round production facility at Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Ala.
SM-2 is the world's premier fleet-area air defense weapon, providing increased intercept range, high- and low-intercept capability, and performance against advanced and anti-ship missile threats. Its primary mission is fleet-area air defense and ship self-defense, but it has also demonstrated an extended-area air defense protection capability.
SM-6 delivers a proven over-the-horizon air defense capability by leveraging the time-tested advantages of the Standard Missile's airframe and propulsion.

  • The SM-6 uses both active and semiactive guidance modes and advanced fuzing techniques.
  • It incorporates the advanced signal processing and guidance control capabilities from Raytheon's Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile.

SM-2s are the world's premier fleet-area air defense weapons. The missiles are also capable of providing extended-area air defense.

  • SM-2's international customers include: Australia, Canada, Germany, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, Spain and Taiwan.
  • SM-2 has been integrated with both Aegis and non-Aegis combat weapon systems.
  • The missile can be launched from the MK-41, MK-13 and MK-26 launchers.
  • SM-2 has an extensive flight test history of more than 2,500 successful flight tests
  • More than 5,000 SM-2s have been delivered to the US and allied customers.

Joining forces for the construction of submarines (Google Translation)


March 28, 2015 - For the implementation of the state armament program, the effective construction of modern nuclear submarines at Sevmash organized slip way production.
It will include two of the largest stockpile of Sevmash plant - 50 and 55, as well as management of testing and commissioning (UISZ). The new structure is designed to increase the pace of development of modern nuclear submarines (recently the company incorporated a significant number of submarines), to ensure uniform distribution of the labor force, to facilitate the transfer of manufacturing experience. Recall slipway shop 50 in 90 years was occupied civilian products: in particular, to build a unique offshore ice-resistant platform "Prirazlomnaja." Last year, the plant returned to its core business: here were laid modern submarines. As the head of slip production Sergei Novoselov, currently in accordance with the order of the Director General, a system of management of the new scale unit.

Coast Guard Rescues Nine From Canadian Tall Ship

Coast Guard search and rescue crews from Station Gloucester, Air Station Cape Cod and the Coast Guard Cutter Ocracoke rescued nine crewmembers from the Canadian tall ship Liana's Ransom 58 miles east of Gloucester, Monday. Watchstanders at the Sector Boston Command Center received notification at 12:35 a.m. that the vessel's engines were disabled and its sails were wrapped around the mast. As the weather deteriorated, and seas reached nearly 10 feet, Sector Boston launched two 47-foot motor lifeboat crews from Station Gloucester to tow the vessel back to Gloucester. Once on scene, the boat crews connected the tow, but the rough sea conditions caused the tow line to break. U.S. Coast Guard Video

New Drydock for BAE Systems San Diego

We are a leading provider of ship repair, maintenance, modernization, conversion, and overhaul for the Navy, other government, commercial, and private customers
BAE Systems

San Diego March 30,2015 - BAE Systems will significantly expand dry-docking capabilities at its San Diego shipyard, enhancing the ship repair, maintenance, and modernization services the company provides to the U.S. Navy, other government agencies, and commercial customers.
The investment by BAE Systems, which will include the purchase of a new dry dock and a range of infrastructure improvements at the yard, will total approximately $100 million.
The company made the announcement during a ribbon-cutting ceremony dedicating a new pier at the shipyard along the San Diego waterfront. Attendees included U.S. Representatives Susan Davis, Duncan Hunter, and Scott Peters.
“Our primary strategy and mission in San Diego is to support the U.S. Navy and its rebalance to the Pacific,” said Erwin Bieber, president of BAE Systems’ Platforms & Services sector. “The new pier and dry dock will complement and expand the shipyard’s existing capacity in this homeport and provide greater capabilities to our customers. Our continuing investment in the region further demonstrates our commitment to San Diego and recognizes the important role it plays in our strategy.”
The new pier and dry dock will support current and future Navy surface ship repair, maintenance, and modernization, and will accommodate cruisers, destroyers, amphibious assault ships, mine countermeasures ships, and both variants of the Littoral Combat Ship. The expanded facilities may also service other ships and vessels under contract, including those for Military Sealift Command, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the U.S. Maritime Administration.
The new Pier 4, at 415-feet long and 64-feet wide, replaces a 52-year-old pier and includes new services such as fresh water, electrical, sewage, and storm water containment.
The new dry dock will measure 950-feet long and 205-feet wide, with a design lifting capacity of 55,000 tons. When operational in early 2017, it will be the company’s largest dry dock in the United States and will employ several environmental design features, including LED lighting, electric cranes, air-cooled emergency generators, a zero discharge closed-loop salt water system, and storm water recovery systems.
BAE Systems currently employs approximately 3,000 people in the region, including shipyard workers, weapons support personnel, and employees in nearby Rancho Bernardo supporting U.S. military and intelligence community customers. The new pier and dry dock are expected to increase employment opportunities at the San Diego yard.
BAE Systems is a leading provider of ship repair, maintenance, modernization, conversion, and overhaul for the Navy, other government, commercial, and private customers. The company operates seven full-service shipyards in Alabama, Florida, California, Virginia, and Hawaii, and offers a highly skilled and experienced workforce of more than 5,000 employees, eight dry docks, and significant pier space and ship support services. The company also has commercial shipbuilding and module fabrication capabilities at its Mobile, Alabama, and Jacksonville, Florida, shipyards.

RNOV Shinas Christened at ST Engineering Singapore

RNOV Shinas is the second patrol vessel designed and built by ST Marine, based on its proprietary Fearless-class Patrol Vessel, for the Royal Navy of Oman

Singapore March 31, 2015 - Singapore Technologies Marine Ltd (ST Marine), the marine arm of Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd (ST Engineering), held the Naming Ceremony today for the second Patrol Vessel (PV), RNOV Shinas cum the interim delivery for the first vessel RNOV Al Seeb, built for Royal Navy of Oman (RNO). The Guest-of-Honour was the Commander of the Royal Navy of Oman, Rear Admiral (RADM) Abdullah bin Khamis bin Abdullah al-Raisi.
ST Marine won the contract to design and build four PVs for the RNO in 2012. This contract was awarded by the Ministry of Defence of the Sultanate of Oman through a competitive international tender. The first vessel is expected to be delivered in 2Q2015 and the final one in 3Q2016.
Rear Admiral Abdullah bin Khamis bin Abdullah al-Raisi, Commander, The Royal Navy of Oman, said, "First of all, I thank the the blessing and success today to accept and receive the Royal Navy of Oman Vessel (RNOV) “Al Seeb” the first ship of Al-Ofouq project and the launch of RNOV “Shinas”, the second ship of this project under which the RNO is being supplied with 4 coastal patrolling ships. The ships of this class are equipped with the latest state-of-the-art equipment and defence systems which enable them to fulfill their full military tasks and duties efficiently at sea and in a way that meet the RNO requirements and commitments towards it full national missions represented in the protection of the Omani territorial waters and to reinforce maritime security over the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). Worth to mention that the RNO is very satisfied about the work being carried by ST Marine as the project phases till date are being conducted according to the agreed time schedule. Furthermore, the continuous cooperation between the company staff and the RNO project representative in Singapore had positive impact on the success achieved and witnessed today. I hope that this project upon completion would be a new addition of upgrading and development plans adopted by the RNO toward modernising its naval fleet in coincidence with the thorough development witnessed by the Sultan’s Armed Forces on the whole.” 
“ST Marine is delighted that today, together with our esteemed customer and partner, the Royal Navy of Oman, we mark two major milestones for the Al-Ofouq project - the interim acceptance for the first patrol vessel ‘RNOV Al Seeb’ and the naming for the second patrol vessel ‘RNOV Shinas’. Shinas is a coastal town in northern Oman at the Gulf of Oman.  Like this town, the vessel RNOV Shinas will be deployed to watch over the Gulf leading into the Straits of Hormuz to ensure that the sea lanes are kept open and safe. The vessel will also ensure the sovereignty of the Sultanate of Oman. ST Marine wants to thank and appreciate the Royal Navy of Oman for their guidance and professionalism in ensuring that together, we continue to achieve or even better what we have achieved so far. With the interim acceptance of RNOV Al-Seeb, we also want to wish her fair winds and following seas as she embarks on the next phase of her journey,” said NG Sing Chan, President, ST Marine.

Ingalls Shipbuilding Awarded $604.3 Million Contract to Build DDG 121


Pascagoula March 30, 2015 - Huntington Ingalls Industries Ingalls Shipbuilding division has received a $604.3 million contract modification to fund construction of the Arleigh Burke-class (DDG 51) Aegis guided missile destroyer DDG 121 for the U.S. Navy. The ship is the third of five DDG 51 destroyers the company was awarded in June 2013.
"The DDG 51 program has been the backbone of Ingalls Shipbuilding for the past three decades," said DDG 51 Program Manager George Nungesser. "We now have a hot production line in the shipyard where we can maintain our highly skilled shipbuilding crews in the same working areas for each ship. This will allow increased learning and provide the most efficient way to reduce cost and schedule while building quality ships for the United States Navy. We have a lot of experience and talent throughout our program, and with the facilities to build ships simultaneously, we will continue to improve as each ship is launched."
The five-ship contract, part of a multi-year procurement in the DDG 51 program, allows Ingalls to build ships more efficiently by buying bulk material and moving the skilled workforce from ship to ship. With the contract, Ingalls will be building DDGs over the next decade.
Ingalls has delivered 28 Arleigh Burke-class destroyers to the Navy. Destroyers currently under construction at Ingalls are John Finn (DDG 113), Ralph Johnson (DDG 114), Paul Ignatius (DDG 117) and Delbert D. Black (DDG 119).

Stephen Metz Appointed as VP/Executive Director of Navy Programs at AMERICAN SYSTEMS

Chantilly VA March 31, 2015 - AMERICAN SYSTEMS, a leading provider of government IT and engineering solutions and one of the top 100 employee-owned companies in the U.S., today announced that Stephen Metz has been appointed to its executive team as Vice President/Executive Director of Navy Programs.
Metz will manage AMERICAN SYSTEMS' existing business units which focus on various U.S. Department of the Navy markets, including the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, Naval Surface Warfare Center, Naval Sea Systems Command, Space and Warfare Systems Command, and Surface Fleet Commands. Metz replaces Steve Bonwich, who is retiring after spending the past nine years leading the company's Navy programs. 
"Our support of the U.S. Navy goes back almost 40 years, and adding a Navy and industry vet with Steve Metz's experience and reputation to our team ensures that our partnership with this important customer will continue to thrive," said Peter Smith, president and CEO, AMERICAN SYSTEMS.
Metz has many years of leadership and management experience at the corporate level and in Department of Defense organizations in Washington, D.C. and in the field. Prior to joining AMERICAN SYSTEMS, Metz held senior positions with QED Systems, Inc., Definitive Logic, CDI-Marine, and BAE Systems, after serving in the U.S. Navy for 31 years. As DDG Project Officer, Metz managed the reconstruction and return of the USS Cole to the operational fleet following the terrorist attack on the vessel in 2000.
Metz earned a B.S. in Marine Engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1981, and Master's degrees from the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School and the Industrial College of the Armed Forces. Metz is a licensed Professional Mechanical Engineer and a member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and the American Society of Naval Engineers.

Ingalls Shipbuilding Launches Destroyer John Finn (DDG 113)

Pascagoula March 30, 2015 - Huntington Ingalls Industries' Ingalls Shipbuilding division launched the company's 29th Arleigh Burke-class (DDG 51) Aegis guided missile destroyer, John Finn (DDG 113), at first light on Saturday.
"It's exciting to see another Ingalls-built destroyer in the water," said DDG 51 Program Manager George Nungesser. "Our shipbuilders have proven time and time again they can handle whatever it takes to build, test and deliver these extremely complex warships. This launch was no exception. Our hot production line is now in a good state as we have three DDGs under construction and another one in pre-fabrication. What our shipbuilders accomplish every day matters to our quality, cost and schedule, and implementing our learning from ship to ship will allow us to improve in every aspect of destroyer construction."
Ingalls uses a safe and efficient method of launching ships and has been using that process for more than 40 years. John Finn was moved on rail cars from land to the company's floating drydock a week prior to launch. Shipbuilders then spent the next week preparing the ship and dry dock for Saturday's launch.
"This is the first DDG 51-class ship to launch in almost four years, and we're both proud and excited with the progress the program is making," said Capt. Mark Vandroff, the U.S. Navy's DDG 51-class program manager. "I look forward to John Finn joining the fleet and the other ships of her class to continue in the legacy of success that is the Arleigh Burke destroyer."
Ingalls has delivered 28 Arleigh Burke-class destroyers to the Navy. Destroyers currently under construction at Ingalls are John Finn (DDG 113), Ralph Johnson (DDG 114), Paul Ignatius (DDG 117) and Delbert D. Black (DDG 119). Just last week, Ingalls received a contract modification funding the construction of the company's 33rd destroyer, DDG 121.

IAI to Supply Four Super Dvora MK3 Boats to an Africa Customer

Mar 31, 2015 - IAI recently received a contract worth tens millions of dollars to supply four Super Dvora Mk 3 Fast Patrol Boat to an African military customer. All four boats will be built at IAI Ramta's facilities in Israel, and will be delivered during 2016. These newly ordered Super Dvoras are stated to be used for coastal defense, EEZ and HLS missions.
The Super Dvora Mk3 is a combat proven boat that is currently in service with several navies worldwide. 
"With an overall length of 27 meters, a top speed in excess of 40 knots, and equipped with a full suite of advanced weapons and sensors, this powerful boat will be an important addition to our customer's maritime arsenal for securing its littoral waters", said Nitzan Shaked, IAI/Ramta's General Manager. "We are very proud that our boat are being operated on nearly all of the world's oceans, and that this, another African customer, has selected our proven design to address their significant maritime challenges." 
To date, IAI has supplied more than 100 patrol boats in various configurations, via contracts valued at hundreds of millions of dollars, to maritime customers around the world. 

OSI’s Integrated Navigation and Tactical System Selected for Indian Navy New Build Project

Burnaby BC March 30, 2015 - OSI Maritime Systems (OSI) is pleased to announce the signing of a contract to provide Integrated Navigation and Tactical Systems (INTS) for the Indian Navy Cadet Training Ship (CTS) new build project. The three ships are being built in India by the ABG Shipyard.

INTS is an integrated navigation and tactical bridge system designed specifically to meet the needs of the military naval vessel market. Fully scalable, INTS can be purposed designed for small craft such as Patrol Boats up to Major Warships.  Featured within INTS is an array of multi-function consoles which display navigation and tactical outputs such as Radar, Conning, and OSI’s Electronic Chart Precise Integrated Navigation System (ECPINS®).  ECPINS for Warships is an International Maritime Organization (IMO) Approved ECDIS – the only ECDIS independently certified against NATO WECDIS STANAG 4564.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Isaac Mayo Commissioned

Lt. Ginny R. Nadolny, commanding officer of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Isaac Mayo, stands at the stern of the cutter Mayo before its commissioning on March 28, 2015, at U.S. Coast Guard Sector Key West, Fla. Isaac Mayo was a volunteer for the U.S. Life-Saving Service who, in the spring of 1879, displayed extraordinary character during his heroic rescue of the crew of a schooner during a raging snowstorm that blanketed the shores of the Northeastern United States. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Marilyn Fajardo)
Lt. Ginny R. Nadolny, commanding officer of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Isaac Mayo, stands at the stern of the cutter Mayo before its commissioning on March 28, 2015 at U.S. Coast Guard Sector Key West. Fla. Isaac Mayo was a volunteer for the U.S. Life Saving Service who, in the spring of 1879, displayed extraordinary character during his heroic rescue of the crew of a schooner during a raging snowstorm that blanketed the shores of the Northeastern United States.  U.S. Coast Guard photo by Marilyn Fajardo.
Audie N. Dodson, sponsor of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Isaac Mayo, receives a plaque with the cutter's coin from Lt. Ginny R. Nadolny, commanding officer of the Isaac Mayo, during the cutter's commissioning ceremony at Coast Guard Sector Key West, Fla., March 28, 2015. Dodson is the great-great-great-granddaughter of the cutter's namesake. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Lt. j.g. Pete Bermont)
Audie N. Dodson, sponsor of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Isaac Mayo, receives a plaque with the cutter's coin from Lt. Ginny R. Nadolny, commanding officer of the Isaac Mayo, during the cutter's commissioning ceremony at Coast Guard Sector Key West, Fla., March 28, 2015.  Dodson is the great-great-great granddaughter of the cutter's namesake. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Lt. j.g. Pete Bermont. 
Cynthia Martin, the great-great-great-granddaughter of Isaac Mayo, hands the first officer of the deck, Petty Officer 1st Class Joel Ortiz, the ship's long glass in the traditional ceremony of setting the first watch at U.S. Coast Guard Sector Key West, Fla., March 28, 2015. The officer of the deck is the commanding officer’s direct representative and, while on watch, is in charge of safety and smooth operation of the ship and crew. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Lt. j.g. Pete Bermont)
Cynthia Martin, the great-great-great granddaughter of Isaac Mayo, hands the first officer of the deck, Petty officer 1st Class Joel Ortiz, the ship's long glass in the traditional ceremony of setting the first watch at U.S. Coast Guard Sector Key West, Fla., March 8, 2014. The officer of the deck is the commanding officer’s direct representative and, while on watch, is in charge of safety and smooth operation of the ship and crew. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Lt. j.g. Pete Bermont.
Crew members man the Coast Guard Cutter Isaac Mayo for the first time after its commissioning and salute symbolizing they have officially manned their stations March 28, 2015. The Coast Guard 7th District welcomed their 12th fast response cutter to the fleet in Key West, Fla. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Lt. j.g. Pete Bermont)
Crewmembers man the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Isaac Mayo for the first time after its commissioning and salute symbolizing they have officially manned their stations, March 28,2015. The Coast Guard 7th District welcomed their 12th fast response cutter to the fleet in Key West, Fla. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Lt. j.g. Pete Bermont.
U.S. Rep. Carlos Curbelo and Cecilia Curbelo, along with Rear Adm. Jake Korn, U.S. Coast Guard 7th District commander, and Lt. Ginny R. Nadolny, commanding officer of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Isaac Mayo, stand at the bow of the Isaac Mayo following the cutter's commissioning ceremony at Coast Guard Sector Key West, Fla., March 28, 2015. Mayo is the sixth Sentinel Class Fast Response Cutter to be home-ported in Key West. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Lt. j.g. Pete Bermont)
U.S. Representative Carlos Curbelo and Mrs. Cecilia Curbelo along with Rear Adm. Jake Korn, U.S. Coast Guard 7th District commander, and Lt. Ginny R. Nadolny, commanding officer of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Isaac Mayo, stand at the bow of the Isaac Mayo following the cutter's commissioning ceremony at Coast Guard Sector Key West, Fla., March 28, 2015.  Mayo is the sixth Sentinel Class Fast Response Cutter to be homeported in Key West.  Dodson is the  great-great-great granddaughter of Isaac Mayo. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Lt. j.g. Pete Bermont.

Each FRC is named for an enlisted Coast Guard hero who distinguished him or herself in the line of duty. This vessel is named after Coast Guard hero, Isaac Mayo. In the spring of 1879 a raging snowstorm blanketed the shores of the Northeastern United States. The perilous seas and weather caused a three-masted schooner, the Sarah J. Fort to wreck on the shores of Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Mayo displayed extraordinary character during the disarray as he and his crew faced the storm to rescue the schooner’s sailors. Because of Mayo’s exemplary surfman and leadership skills throughout the challenging rescue, Mayo was awarded the Gold Lifesaving Medal on November 10, 1879.
The Key West Navy League Commissioning Committee is supporting the commissioning through funding of activities traditionally associated with a commissioning, separate and apart from the U.S. Coast Guard.

Friday, March 27, 2015

New flight simulator for Navy helicopter crews


Canberra March 27, 2015 - The Minister for Defence, Kevin Andrews, and the Member for Gilmore, Ann Sudmalis, today announced that the first of two Navy MH-60R Seahawk ‘Romeo’ flight simulators had been commissioned into service.
The Seahawk Romeo training system is part of the $3.2 billion dollar investment that will deliver 24 new Seahawk Romeo naval combat helicopters.
More than 100 long term jobs will be created in the Shoalhaven area to support the new Seahawk Romeo capability.
The training system will include two full motion flight simulators and a wide range of sophisticated maintenance trainers, allowing Navy’s Seahawk Romeo crews to safely train in Australia across a wide range of operational and mission related training scenarios.
HMAS Albatross in Nowra, has already begun training Seahawk Romeo crew, with a training capacity of around 80 students a year, including pilots, aviation warfare officers, sensor operators, and maintenance personnel.
The simulators will prepare Navy crews for advanced maritime combat operations from Navy ships all over the world.
It is expected that the second simulator will be delivered in 2016.
The Seahawk Romeo helicopters are on track to achieve an Initial Operational Capability at sea by August 2015.

First Pass approval for ANZAC Air Search Radar Replacement


Canberra March 27, 2015 - The Australian Government had provided First Pass approval for project SEA 1448 Phase 4B – ANZAC Air Search Radar Replacement.
The ANZAC frigates use their air search radar to scan at long ranges for potential threats. The radar is an integral part of a modern warship and important for ensuring the safety of the vessel and other friendly ships in dangerous areas. The current ANZAC radar is old and requires replacement with modern technology to maintain the robust front-line capability provided by these ships.
In addition to the radar replacement, there will be an upgrade to the Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) capability to comply with future military and civil Secondary Surveillance Radar aviation requirements.
The project intends to replace the ageing long-range radar onboard the ANZAC class frigates with significantly more capable radar, with integrated and upgraded IFF capability, currently under development by CEA Technologies in Canberra.
CEA is an internationally recognised Australian company that developed the successful Anti-Ship Missile Defence ‘CEAFAR’ radar currently being installed on the ANZAC frigates.
The new radar will build on this successful technology to deliver a generational improvement over the current ANZAC long-range radar. The CEA long-range radar is expected to provide earlier warning of potential threats and greater situational awareness to the ship and the task group. The two radars share the same design principles and will provide a significant capability advantage to our ships.
The Department of Defence will continue to work with CEA to successfully develop this new technology. As part of a Risk Reduction Program with CEA, the technology is expected to be demonstrated in 2015‑16. In the event that the Risk Reduction Program is not successful, Defence may consider military‑off‑the‑shelf radar options.
Government will consider the next steps for the project at Second Pass approval planned for 2016-17.
The new capability is forecast to be in service by the end of the decade. It is expected that it will be supported by Australian industry throughout its life.

New UK-French mine countermeasures contract awarded

BAE Systems

London March 27, 2015 - On behalf of the French Defence Procurement Agency (DGA) in France and UK MOD’s Defence Equipment & Support organisation, OCCAR has awarded the Maritime Mine Counter Measures (MMCM) contract to Thales, in collaboration with BAE Systems and their partners in France (ECA) and in the UK (ASV, Wood & Douglas, SAAB). Initiated in 2012 under a cooperation agreement between France and the United Kingdom, the MMCM program develops a prototype autonomous system for detection and neutralisation of sea mines and underwater improvised explosive devices (UWIEDs).
The MMCM contract includes three stages, starting with a first phase for design. The next stages, which are subject to contract options, will manufacture and experiment the future mine countermeasures capabilities of both France (SLAM-F future mine countermeasures system) and the United Kingdom (MHC – Minecountermeasures and Hydrography Capability). The program will deliver an autonomous, remotely operated mine countermeasures solution.
As part of the MMCM program, Thales and BAE Systems are committed to providing systems to both the French Navy and Royal Navy for two years of evaluation testing. Each system will comprise a USV (Unmanned Surface Vehicle) equipped with an autonomous navigation system, an obstacle detection and avoidance sonar, a threat identification and neutralisation capability based on ROVs (Remotely Operated Vehicles), a T-SAS (Towed Synthetic Aperture Sonar) and AUVs (Autonomous Underwater Vehicles). The geolocated AUVs will use the latest-generation synthetic aperture sonar SAMDIS with multi-aspect functionality for improved classification. They will perform their tasks autonomously with control from a host ship or shore-based station via high-data-rate communication links.
The systems, meeting the operational requirements of both nations, incorporate state-of-the-art technologies including very high-resolution multiview imaging sonars and sophisticated analysis tools to provide unparalleled levels of performance in automatic threat recognition and classification.
The project will be delivered by an integrated team including personnel from Thales in France and the UK as well as BAE Systems.  French and UK contractors involved in the MMCM system include ASV Ltd for the supply of the surface vehicle, ECA for the supply of the underwater unmanned vehicles, SAAB for the ROVs and Wood & Douglas for communications.
Thales will deliver the integrated Portable Operations Centre (POC) solution, which will incorporate command & control by Thales and BAE Systems. BAE Systems will provide the Mission Management System, managing the command and information systems, as well as the ROVs, the virtual visualization and experimentation suite.
The launch of this program builds on the Lancaster House defence and security cooperation treaties signed in November 2010 and follows on from the Franco-British summit held on 31 January 2014.

U.S. Marine Corps MV-22 Osprey lands on a South Korean ship for the first time

Two Marine Corps MV-22 Ospreys performed touch-and-go landings on the ROKS Dokdo on March 26, 2015, the first time an Osprey landing on a South Korean ship.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Maritime garrison stages tactical drill in South China Sea

The main artillery is firing at the target. A maritime garrison command of the South China Sea Fleet of the PLA Navy held an one-week-long drill at a sea area in the South China Sea in middle and late March. Warships of multiple types practiced during the tactics drill of different maritime operations including firing at the surface target, missile attacks, anti-submarine, anti-terror and anti-piracy as well as comprehensive defense. (Chinamil.com.cn/Zhao Changhong)

Two rocket shells are launched from a warship in the drill. A maritime garrison command of the South China Sea Fleet of the PLA Navy held an one-week-long drill at a sea area in the South China Sea in middle and late March. Warships of multiple types practiced during the tactics drill of different maritime operations including firing at the surface target, missile attacks, anti-submarine, anti-terror and anti-piracy as well as comprehensive defense. (Chinamil.com.cn/Zhao Changhong)

Two smoke jamming bombs are fired in the drill. A maritime garrison command of the South China Sea Fleet of the PLA Navy held an one-week-long drill at a sea area in the South China Sea in middle and late March. Warships of multiple types practiced during the tactics drill of different maritime operations including firing at the surface target, missile attacks, anti-submarine, anti-terror and anti-piracy as well as comprehensive defense. (Chinamil.com.cn/Zhao Changhong)

The shells are well maintained. A maritime garrison command of the South China Sea Fleet of the PLA Navy held an one-week-long drill at a sea area in the South China Sea in middle and late March. Warships of multiple types practiced during the tactics drill of different maritime operations including firing at the surface target, missile attacks, anti-submarine, anti-terror and anti-piracy as well as comprehensive defense. (Chinamil.com.cn/Zhao Changhong)

MOD announces go ahead for land transfer for Plymouth City Deal


London March 26, 2015 - Defence Minister Phillip Dunne today confirmed the transfer of land from MOD to allow the Plymouth City Deal to go ahead.
Speaking at a ceremony at the city’s historic South Yard, Minister for Defence Equipment, Support and Technology Philip Dunne said:
Devonport has been at the heart of Plymouth for generations, so I am delighted to confirm that the Ministry of Defence will be transferring South Yard to Plymouth City Council for its City Deal program, which in total is expected to create more than 9,000 jobs and bring in more than £290 million in much-needed investment to the South West.
It will also preserve this vital part of Plymouth’s naval heritage, further strengthening the bonds between Plymouth and the Royal Navy.
More than 40 companies have already expressed interest in the site, which was declared an Enterprise Zone by Chancellor George Osborne in last week’s Budget. This will allow Plymouth City Council will be able to offer competitive packages to business wishing to relocate to South Yard.
The development of South Yard is expected to create 1,100 jobs as the site becomes a dynamic new center of marine industry. Once finished, the redevelopment of the site will create 25,000m2 of flexible employment space with deep water testing facilities suitable for the marine and advanced manufacturing sectors.
Base Commander of Her Majesty’s Naval Base Devonport Commodore Ian Shipperley said:
The redevelopment of South Yard will be a shot in the arm for the Plymouth economy and the South West in general. The unique facilities make this a prime location for the very industries that have been the lifeblood of Plymouth for hundreds of years, and we at HMRNB Plymouth are delighted to see this site put to such a good use.

Russia Continues to Expel Foreign Environmental Watch Dogs

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

William P. Doyle Confirmed as FMC Commissioner


Washington March 25, 2015 - The United States Senate confirmed President Obama’s nomination of William P. Doyle on March 23, 2015 as Federal Maritime Commissioner. Commissioner Doyle will be sworn in for his second term as Commissioner in the next several weeks.
Prior to his appointment to the FMC, Commissioner Doyle spent his career in the transportation sector. He is a Coast Guard licensed engineer and served as an officer in the U.S. Merchant Marine, sailing commercially on vessels in the domestic and international trades for 10 years. From 2011 to 2013, the Commissioner served as the chief of staff for the Marine Engineers’ Beneficial Association (MEBA). From 2008 to 2011, Mr. Doyle was the Director of Permits, Scheduling and Compliance at the Office of the Federal Coordinator for Alaska Natural Gas Transportation Projects.
Commissioner Doyle received a B.S. in marine engineering from the Massachusetts Maritime Academy and a J.D. from Widener University School of Law.
During his first term, Commissioner Doyle actively participated in many issues facing the Commission and the maritime industry including efforts to relieve port congestion and ensure that goods move efficiently through the transportation chain. Internationally, Commissioner Doyle represented the FMC at the annual U.S.-China Bilateral Maritime Consultations where he met with officials from the People’s Republic of China regarding maritime shipping matters such as tax policies affecting U.S. interests in the U.S.-China trade. Commissioner Doyle also has worked with his fellow Commissioners to adjudicate a backlog of cases filed with the Commission; the Commission now resolves over 90% of its cases within 24 months. Commissioner Doyle stated, "I would like to thank President Obama for his confidence in me and am honored by the Senate’s confirmation. I will continue the important work ahead of us at the Federal Maritime Commission and I look forward to working with the Chairman, my fellow Commissioners and the Commission staff in order to accomplish our goals."
FMC Chairman Mario Cordero stated, "I am very pleased that the Senate has affirmed the President’s selection by voting to confirm Commissioner Doyle for his second term. We look forward to continuing the Commission’s important work with Commissioner Doyle firmly on board.

Host ports for the North Sea Tall Ships Regatta 2016 announced


March 24, 2015 - Sail Training International is delighted to announce the two ports selected to host the second North Sea Tall Ships Regatta - Blyth, UK  and Gothenburg, Sweden. 
For Blyth in Northumberland, UK this is the first major Tall Ships event they have  hosted and the town is eager to welcome the international fleet of Tall Ships.  
Gothenburg in Sweden will be hosting this major Tall Ships event for the fifth time – following their success in hosting The Tall Ships Races in 1968, 1978 1986 and 1997.
The first North Sea Regatta was held in 2010, racing from Hartlepool, UK to Ijmuiden, Netherlands. Thirty-one vessels of all classes from around the world took part in this launch event – including the magnificent Class A vessels Shabab Oman (Oman), Stad Amsterdam (Netherlands) and Santa Maria Manuela (Portugal).
The North Sea Tall Ships Regatta 2016

  • Blyth, UK     Friday 26 - Monday 29 August 2016
  • Race (approximately 500 nautical miles)
  • Gothenburg, Sweden  Saturday 3 – Tuesday 6 September 2016

Paul Bishop, Head of Race Directorate, Sail Training International said, “2016 is a special year for Tall Ships events.  The Tall Ships Races 2016 will be celebrating a diamond anniversary as it will be sixty years since the first Tall Ships race in 1956.  And the North Sea Tall Ships Regatta will be held for only the second time in six years – so we are particularly pleased to be visiting two excellent, but contrasting ports. “Blyth is a tidal deep water port which can accommodate the largest Class A ships and offers first class amenities to the fleet   

Get on Board a Tall Ship in 2015
Sail Training International

“The town and port of Blyth is set up to deliver a tremendous welcome and provide great hospitality.  Blyth’s association with the sea goes back centuries and it is fitting to welcome these ships of bygone times.  The event will be a great opportunity for individuals of all ages, and organisations, to be involved and take part in a world class event.  
“Gothenburg already has an excellent reputation for delivering Tall Ship events.  They have traditionally supported the development and education of young people and have a track record of looking after our sail training Tall Ships.
“Both ports also have an excellent environmental profile and the Regatta will be very much in synergy with the sustainability messages we aim to deliver through our events.”
Blyth is on the north east coast of the UK, in the county of Northumberland. The Port of Blyth has been an integral part of the town of Blyth and wider region for centuries. The shipment of coal began during the 14th century and the early 20th century saw further expansion into shipbuilding and coal exports, with Blyth becoming the largest coal exporting port in Europe in the early 1960s.  
In recent years Blyth has established itself as a modern, diverse port handling everything from wind turbines and forest products, to hosting a resident fishing fleet and being home to the Royal Northumberland Yacht Club.   
It has a reputation for being a leading renewable energy related port hosting the Blyth Renewables Festival and works closely with environmental bodies to ensure environmental best practice is maintained.   The Port’s carbon footprint has already been acknowledged as being significantly better then accepted good practice.
Martin Lawlor, Chief Executive, Port of Blyth, said: “We are delighted that the Regatta is coming to Blyth and look forward to welcoming the ships and their crews. Visitors will also get a great view of the ships in the main public quay areas and I am sure the event will prove hugely popular. As a Trust Port we are pleased to have played our part in securing the event for the benefit of our stakeholders and the region as a whole.”
Gothenburg, known as ‘a sustainable city open to the world’, is the second largest city in Sweden and the fifth largest in the Nordic countries. Situated by the Kattegat, on the west coast of Sweden, it is classified as a global city and was ranked as the 12th most inventive city in the world by Forbes. The city is known for hosting some of the largest annual events in Scandinavia, including major marine events such as the Volvo Ocean Race which it is hosting for the third time in 2015
Max Markusson, Director of Events at Gothenburg & Co said, "We are thrilled about hosting the North Sea Tall Ships Regatta in 2016. It is a great honor for Gothenburg to be able to give the extraordinary experience of a Tall Ships event to the passionate sailing fans in our part of the world."   

CPI Aero Awarded a Contract by Northrop Grumman for ALMDS Program

Northrop Grumman

Edgewood NY March 24, 2015 - CPI Aerostructures, Inc. (CPI Aero®) has been awarded a $1.21 million contract by Northrop Grumman Corporation to manufacture pod structural housings for the Airborne Laser Mine Detection System (ALMDS). The contract includes options which, if exercised, would bring the cumulative value to $6.75 million.
In December 2014, the U.S. Navy issued a contract to Northrop Grumman to deliver five additional Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP) systems. The contract also includes five subsequent options to deliver follow-on Full Rate Production (FRP) systems at a maximum order quantity of four systems per option. CPI Aero will manufacture pod structural housings under this new contract, with deliveries scheduled to commence in early 2016. The period of performance of the entire CPI Aero contract, including option periods, is through 2021.
Since 2005, CPI Aero has delivered 18 ALMDS pod structural housings for the U.S. Navy's LRIP Phases 1 through 4 and other Foreign sales. Northrop Grumman's ALMDS is part of the mine countermeasure mission package on the U.S. Navy's new Littoral Combat Ship and is designed to find and geolocate mine-like objects in waters near the ocean's surface, where aircraft carriers and expeditionary strike groups must operate. The ALMDS is mounted on an MH-60S helicopter. The pod structural housings to be built by CPI Aero are pressurized and contain the thermally conditioned ALMDS laser and electronics.

Sutherland leaves Babcock’s Devonport dockyard for sea trials

March 24, 2015 - Type 23 frigate HMS Sutherland left Babcock’s Devonport Royal Dockyard for sea trials today (24 March) with increased structural sustainability and fighting capability, as part of a significant upgrade and substantial maintenance program by Babcock, including extensive improvements.
HMS Sutherland’s refit, undertaken under the Surface Ship Support Alliance (an alliance between Ministry of Defence, Babcock and BAE Systems) Class Output Management (COM) arrangements, has seen industry take the lead on the content and optimisation of the package to provide the necessary through-life availability and capability.  The ship’s departure for sea trials today marks a major milestsone in the refit, before she is returned to the fleet in the spring.
HMS Sutherland has undergone a full structural repair and strengthening programme following a structural survey of the ship and an unprecedented dry blast ‘back to bare’ programme for the superstructure and upper deck.  This has included new sections and steel upgrades to the hull and superstructure which has significantly de-risked the platform for future operation. 
Upgrades to the ship have included installation of the DNA(2) Command System (central to the ship’s capability against air, surface and underwater threats), and the Artisan (Advanced Radar Target Indication Situational Awareness and Navigation) 3D Radar Type 997 (improving the ship’s air-defence, anti-ship and air traffic management capabilities), as well as the chloropac system (improving performance in the ship’s sea water cooling systems by preventing or reducing marine growth) including modification to the underwater inlets and outlets to reduce corrosion, an upgrade to the high pressure air system pipework (providing safe, reliable and flexible isolation when required), and a galley equipment upgrade, among others.
The deep maintenance programme has also included removal of rudders and stabilisers along with a programme of maintenance on the propeller shafts and associated bearings, overhaul of the helicopter handling system (PRISM), a complete overhaul or renewal of all underwater and shipside valves and numerous pumps and motors from various ship systems, replacement of laundry equipment and of the sonar bow dome, and overhaul of refrigeration and fresh water systems.  A programme of maintenance and minor upgrades on weapons systems including the 4.5 inch gun has also been included, as well as full renewal of the ship’s paint coatings from the water line up following the extensive blast programme.
Babcock Surface Combatant Programme Manager, Gary Simpson, said: “HMS Sutherland has left Devonport for sea trials in significantly better condition with improved sustainability and fighting capability, following what has been a challenging programme, including the emergent structural repair requirement involving considerable planning and management.  This upkeep has enabled valuable experience to be gained, which will in turn form an important contribution in meeting the challenge of delivering extended operating life for the rest of the class, as the Type 23 life extension upkeep programme starts later this year.  The delivery of HMS Sutherland ready to fight long into her extended life will also add to the continuing development of knowledge and experience in undertaking Type 23 upkeeps at Devonport.”
Having now left Devonport to undergo several weeks sea trials as the next phase in the upkeep period, HMS Sutherland is scheduled to return the fleet in late spring, marking completion of the upkeep.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

DARPA Awards Prime Contracts for Tern Phase Two

Tern, a joint program between DARPA and the U.S. Navy’s Office of Naval Research (ONR), seeks to enable forward-deployed small ships to serve as mobile launch and recovery sites for medium-altitude, long-endurance unmanned aerial systems (UAS). In an important step toward that goal, DARPA has awarded prime contracts for Phase 2 of Tern to two companies: AeroVironment, Inc. and Northrop Grumman Corp.

Washington March 23, 2014 - DARPA has awarded prime contracts for Phase 2 of Tern, a joint program between DARPA and the U.S. Navy’s Office of Naval Research (ONR). The goal of Tern is to give forward-deployed small ships the ability to serve as mobile launch and recovery sites for medium-altitude, long-endurance unmanned aerial systems (UAS). These systems could provide long-range intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) and other capabilities over greater distances and time periods than is possible with current assets, including manned and unmanned helicopters. Further, a capacity to launch and retrieve aircraft on small ships would reduce the need for ground-based airstrips, which require significant dedicated infrastructure and resources. The two prime contractors selected by DARPA are AeroVironment, Inc., and Northrop Grumman Corp.
“To offer the equivalent of land-based UAS capabilities from small-deck ships, our Phase 2 performers are each designing a new unmanned air system intended to enable two  previously unavailable capabilities: one, the ability for a UAS to take off and land from very confined spaces in elevated sea states and two, the ability for such a UAS to transition to efficient long-duration cruise missions,” said Dan Patt, DARPA program manager. “Tern’s goal is to develop breakthrough technologies that the Navy could realistically integrate into the future fleet and make it much easier, quicker and less expensive for the Defense Department to deploy persistent ISR and strike capabilities almost anywhere in the world.”
The first two phases of the Tern program focus on preliminary design and risk reduction. In Phase 3, one performer will be selected to build a full-scale demonstrator Tern system for initial ground-based testing. That testing would lead to a full-scale, at-sea demonstration of a prototype UAS on an at-sea platform with deck size similar to that of a destroyer or other surface combat vessel.

Charles River Analytics Develops Improved Training System for Anti-Submarine Warfare

This example of a trainee’s user interface in ST-MASTER shows proficiency levels for several task areas in a configural display.

Cambridge MA March 17, 2015 - Charles River Analytics, a developer of intelligent systems solutions, announces a contract to improve sonar training for the US Navy. The system for Sonar Training, Motivation, Assessment, Tailoring, and Enhanced Remediation, or ST-MASTER, aims to improve sonar training and operation on ships conducting anti-submarine warfare (ASW). The 25-month follow-on contract is valued at just under $700,000.
ASW is a vital strategic concern to the US Navy, since hostile submarines can pose serious threats to naval forces and seaborne lines of communication. “For ASW-capable surface ships, reaching and maintaining ASW proficiency is complicated by the lack of opportunities to interact with submarine targets,” explained Wayne Thornton, Captain, US Navy (Ret'd), the principal investigator on ST-MASTER at Charles River.
To address this issue, the Navy has developed a system for conducting high-fidelity synthetic training to improve the sonar proficiency of ASW-capable surface ships, called the Surface ASW Synthetic Trainer (SAST). The Navy seeks to improve the system, including improving the ability of commanders to assess the sonar readiness of their units, as well as providing for sonar operators and teams being able to assess themselves.
“We are developing and evaluating ST-MASTER to work with the Navy’s SAST to improve sonar training and provide timely, detailed feedback on sonar proficiency,” continued Captain Thornton. “It will incorporate motivation models, assess users’ motivation levels, and provide tailored feedback enhanced by immersive learning simulation features.”
ST-MASTER includes a number of innovative features to improve individual and team motivation and learning, such as motivation models that harness both intrinsic and extrinsic motivations. It also takes a novel approach to tailor training and feedback for individuals and teams by using intelligent agents to modify training scenarios and customize rewards to achieve proficiency goals and dynamically maintain motivation. An example of one of the screens in ST-MASTER is seen below.

New Rockwell Collins avionics on NATO AWACS successful test flight

The Boeing Company recently completed the first test flight of a North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) aircraft (pictured here) with Rockwell Collins’ Flight2 integrated avionics system.

Cedar Rapids IA March 23, 2015 – The Boeing Company recently completed the first test flight of a North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) aircraft with Rockwell Collins’ Flight2 integrated avionics system. The flight deck upgrade includes replacing the existing analog instruments with a modern integrated avionics system that meets the 2020 Communication, Navigation, Surveillance/Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) mandates. Rockwell Collins is providing large displays and controls, Flight Management System (FMS) and new communication and navigation equipment under the program.
“NATO and the U.S. Air Force operate the largest AWACS fleets in the world. After completion of the fleet upgrades, their pilots will benefit from having the most advanced avionics to help them accomplish their missions,” said Troy Brunk, vice president and general manager of Airborne Solutions for Rockwell Collins.
NATO has contracted with Boeing to have an additional 13 AWACS aircraft upgraded with the same integrated avionics system. The U.S. Air Force has also contracted with Boeing for an upgraded AWACS with first flight of the U.S. AWACS planned for 2016. The upgrades will allow NATO and U.S. aircraft to meet current and future CNS/ATM airspace requirements.

Navitas Systems Awarded Major Contract By US Navy

Woodridge, IL –March 23, 2015 – Navitas Systems LLC, a leading provider of energy-enabled system solutions, energy storage products, and power electronics for commercial, industrial and government/military customers, has been awarded an Indefinite Delivery, Indefinite Quantity (“IDIQ”) contract by the Department of the Navy, Naval Surface Warfare Center (NSWC), Crane Division.
Navitas’ award by the Naval Surface Warfare Center to manufacture, test, inspect, package and deliver Circuit Card Assemblies (CCA’s) illustrates the company’s ability to make complicated mission-critical designs for heavy stress environments.  The five-year IDIQ is valued at $11 Million, with a focus on manufacturing and delivering printed circuit boards for weapons systems, including those aboard Navy helicopters and various ground and air activities in support of the United States Navy. Through this IDIQ, Navitas will be the provider of six types of circuit cards.
“As a longstanding supplier to the Navy, we are honored and humbled to have been selected as an awardee by Naval Surface Warfare Center Crane Division to produce these mission-critical components. The quality, cost and lead time of the Navitas solution has helped us achieve this major award from the Crane Division,” said Navitas Systems’ President Mil Ovan.
With NSWC’s expertise in the field of electronic components and sensor systems, they are able to service other agencies and branches of the military including Marine expeditionary units, government intelligence agencies, as well as homeland security.
“With its commitment to supporting the warfighter, Navy Crane’s strategic missions directly contribute to fleet readiness and self-supportability, ensuring that systems are reliable and available when needed most,” stated Navitas Electronics General Manager Samer El Shafei. “At Navitas we are focused on delivering mission critical components that can maintain integrity during severe duty vibration which the electronics boards must endure, and then tie that to these same robustness requirements we leverage in the design of our battery management system electronics for military, commercial, and industrial customers”, ElShafei concluded.
Navitas Systems will be an exhibitor at the upcoming “Buy Indiana” trade show, held at the French Lick Resort & Casino on March 31st, 2015.  The Buy Indiana show spotlights products from key suppliers to Navy Crane engineers and purchasing managers.

HMS Diamond crew back on board after refit

HMS Diamond's Commanding Officer addresses the Ship's Company.

Portsmouth March 23, 2015 - The crew of HMS Diamond have been reunited with their ship after spending months ashore while it received a multi-million pound upgrade.
The Portsmouth-based Type 45 destroyer has undergone extensive maintenance and improvements since it returned from operations last July.
Work included installation of the potent Harpoon missile system and upgrades to communications and IT equipment.
The ship also has a new gas turbine and stabilisers plus upgraded high-pressure salt water and air systems.
Her Commanding Officer, Commander Marcus Hember, said, “The day the ship’s company move back on board is a big day for us.It marks the point at which we can take back full ownership of our ship and begin the process of regeneration. Whilst it is a long process, we are all, ultimately, working towards our deployment in 2016, getting back out on operations and doing what the Royal Navy does best.”
The new systems and equipment will now be fully tested during several months of trials at sea and alongside in Portsmouth.
On completion the crew will be put through operational sea training, testing their war-fighting and damage control skills ahead of Diamond’s deployment on operations next year.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

USS Theodore Roosevelt calls into Portsmouth

The USS Theodore Roosevelt.

Portsmouth March 22, 2015 - USS Theodore Roosevelt has anchored off Portsmouth on a round-the-world deployment.
The visit forms part of an ongoing partnership between the US and UK on carrier operations in the run-up to the Royal Navy’s two new 65,000-tonne ships – HMS Queen Elizabeth and Prince of Wales – entering service.
Among the 5,226 crew on board the carrier are six Royal Navy aircraft handlers who are honing their skills ahead of serving on board HMS Queen Elizabeth which is due to arrive in Portsmouth in 2017.
Another crew member is on board the support ship Winston S Churchill, 27 year-old Royal Navy officer Lieutenant Lynsey Sewell is the ship’s navigating officer. The position is always filled by a UK navigator to honour the ship’s British connection.
Senior officers on board both ships will call on senior Royal Navy officers during the visit to discuss recent global operations and get an update on the UK’s carrier programme.
Defence Secretary Michael Fallon, said, "USS Theodore Roosevelt’s visit shows yet again that UK/US relations are as close as ever. Ten days ago, I was the first of his counterparts to meet incoming Defence Secretary Ash Carter. Having the Roosevelt in Portsmouth today is yet another example of the world’s broadest, deepest and most enduring defence relationship at work. I’m thrilled to be going aboard today to welcome the crew personally."
The Royal Navy’s First Sea Lord, Admiral Sir George Zambellas, added, "It is excellent to see US Navy carrier steel in Portsmouth. And in barely two years we will see UK carrier steel here too. We warmly welcome the Theodore Roosevelt Carrier Strike Group - a reflection of the close partnership between our nations and navies, and the value of credible seapower in support of our shared national interests. Across the spectrum – from Type 45 destroyers providing area air defence for US carriers launching air strikes against ISIL, to generous US support as we regenerate our own carrier strike capability – our common bond has never been richer."
USS Theodore Roosevelt anchored off Stokes Bay near Gosport and USS Winston S Churchill berthed at Portsmouth Naval Base. Both leave Portsmouth on March 27.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Ingalls Shipbuilding Christens Amphibious Transport Dock John P. Murtha (LPD 26)

Pascagoula March 21, 2015 – Huntington Ingalls Industries’ Ingalls Shipbuilding division christened the company’s 10th amphibious transport dock, John P. Murtha (LPD 26), today in front of more than 1,100 guests.
House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., was the featured speaker at the ceremony. “Jack Murtha poured everything—everything he was, everything he had—into the service of our country and the lives of the American people,” she said of her colleague, who represented Pennsylvania’s 12th Congressional District for 36 years until his death in 2010. “To watch Chairman Murtha legislate was to see a master at work, but more indicative of his character was to watch him communicate with our men and women in uniform, whether on the battlefield or at their bedside. He knew how serious a responsibility it is to send our men and women into harm’s way, and he was unwavering in his conviction that we must honor their sacrifice not only with our words but our deeds.
“Like its namesake, the John P. Murtha will provide our servicemen and women the means to enter the battle and to make their way back home,” Pelosi continued. “Congratulations to Ingalls Shipbuilding and all of the hard-working men and women who have put their skill and determination into this ship and this special day.”
Murtha’s daughter, Donna S. Murtha, is the ship sponsor. At the culmination of the ceremony, she smashed a bottle of sparkling wine across the bow of the ship, officially christening LPD 26 as the John P. Murtha. “May God bless this ship and all who sail in her,” she said.
HII President and CEO Mike Petters also spoke at the ceremony. “Ingalls is building each ship better than the last, and the team’s performance—and the performance of the delivered LPDs—has strengthened the nation’s confidence in the LPD program,” he said. “This was most recently demonstrated by the Navy’s request and the Congressional investment in the 12th San Antonio-class warship—and the Navy’s selection of this proven hull-form for its new LX(R) class of amphibious ships. Ingalls is making a difference.”

Murtha is christened
HII photo

Ingalls has built and delivered nine ships in the San Antonio class of ships. LPD 27, named Portland, is scheduled to launch in 2016.
“The ship we christen today honors Congressman John P. Murtha, who proudly served his country as both a Marine and a statesman for almost 40 years,” said Ingalls Shipbuilding President Brian Cuccias. “I can’t imagine a more fitting namesake to represent the marvel of American technology, craftsmanship and strength that is LPD 26. Ingalls shipbuilders know that quality matters. We build our warships as though our own sons and daughters will take them into harm’s way—because they may. And because we owe our warfighters our very best. Our shipbuilders put their hearts and souls into every ship we build—as we have for generations. LPD 26 is no exception. Murtha was the most complete and lowest-cost LPD when she was launched, with many key systems finished months ahead of our historical best. So I’m extremely proud of our LPD 26 shipbuilders.”
In addition to his tenured history in the House of Representatives, Murtha was also a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps and Reserves. He served a distinguished 37 years, receiving the Bronze Star with Combat “V,” two Purple Hearts and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry for his service in the Vietnam War. He retired as a colonel in 1990.
“Deep in the hull or on scaffolding hundreds of feet in the air—in the Deep South heat—these Mississippians are welding, painting and assembling the living quarters, galley, hospital and the command centers for those who serve,” said Mississippi Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves. “You can see their commitment to a job well done—because they know the invaluable role they play in America’s national security.
The San Antonio class is the latest addition to the Navy’s 21st century amphibious assault force. The 684-foot-long, 105-foot-wide ships are used to embark and land Marines, their equipment and supplies ashore via air cushion or conventional landing craft and amphibious assault vehicles, augmented by helicopters or vertical takeoff and landing aircraft such as the MV-22 Osprey. The ships support a Marine Air Ground Task Force across the spectrum of operations, conducting amphibious and expeditionary missions of sea control and power projection to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief missions throughout the first half of the 21st century.