May is Military Appreciation Month Thank you for your service!
SAN DIEGO (May 11, 2015) Staff members from Naval Medical Center San Diego(NMCSD) the San Diego Natural History Museum lift a 500,000-year-old mammoth skull fragment on to the bed of a CT scanner in the NMCSD radiology department. The museum requested NMCSD's assistance in CT and X-ray scanning of the skull fragment due to the technological capabilities available at the medical center. U.S. Navy photo by MC3 Justin W. Galvin
San Diego Military News
USS Essex ARG and 15th MEU deploy
From Amphibious Squadron 3 Public Affairs
SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- More than 4,500 Sailors and Marines from the Essex Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) departed San Diego for a deployment in support of the Navy's maritime strategy, May 11.
The Essex ARG is comprised of the amphibious assault ship USS Essex (LHD 2), the command ship for Amphibious Squadron (PHIBRON) 3 and the 15th MEU, as well as amphibious dock landing ship USS Rushmore (LSD 47) and the amphibious transport dock ship USS Anchorage (LPD 23), which is embarking upon its maiden deployment.
"The Essex ARG/MEU has conducted a robust training cycle and has become a stronger Navy-Marine Corps team, successfully completing every evolution and certifying with flying colors," said Capt. Clint Carroll, commander, Amphibious Squadron 3. "The Sailors and Marines exemplify the hard work, dedication and unit cohesion necessary for a successful deployment. I am confident we are prepared to face any challenge and meet all missions."
After departing San Diego, Essex ARG will transit to Hawaii Operating Area where they are scheduled to participate in exercise Culebra Koa 2015 which is a U.S. Pacific Fleet training exercise designed to demonstrate and increase joint proficiency in expeditionary operations. The exercise will also serve as additional training for the Essex ARG prior to deployment to the Western Pacific and Arabian Gulf.
While deployed, the ARG/MEU team serves as a sea-based, expeditionary crisis response force capable of conducting amphibious missions across the full range of military operations.
The mission of the Essex ARG is to help provide deterrence, promote peace and security, preserve freedom of the seas and provide humanitarian/disaster response as well as supporting the Navy's Maritime Strategy when forward deployed.
National Military News
Successful test of Electromagnetic Catapult on CVN 78
From PEO Carriers Public Affairs
WASHINGTON (NNS) -- The Navy conducted the first-ever, shipboard, full-speed catapult shots using the Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) aboard the aircraft carrier Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78), Naval Sea Systems Command announced May 15.
EMALS is a carrier-based launch system designed to expand the operational capability of the Navy's future carriers to include all current and future planned carrier aircraft. The recent test shots, known as "no-loads" because no aircraft or other loads were attached to the launching shuttle, successfully demonstrated the integrated catapult system. Using electromagnetic technology, the system delivers substantial improvements in system maintenance, increased reliability and efficiency, higher-launch energy capacity, and more accurate end-speed control, with a smooth acceleration at both high and low speeds. By allowing linear acceleration over time, electromagnetic catapults also place less stress on the aircraft.
"This is a very exciting time for the Navy," said Program Executive Officer for Aircraft Carriers Rear Adm. Tom Moore. "For the first time in over 60 years, we've just conducted 22 no load test shots using electricity instead of steam technology."
During the tests, generators within the ship produced an electric pulse, which was passed through power conditioning electronics to linear motors just below the flight deck surface. This energy allowed for the linear motors to propel the launching shuttle down the catapult track in excess of 180 knots before bringing the shuttle to a stop at the end of the track.
The next phase of EMALS testing, scheduled for this summer, will involve launching "dead-loads" off of the bow of CVN 78 into the James River. "Dead-loads" are large, wheeled, steel vessels weighing up to 80,000 pounds to simulate the weight of actual aircraft. The dead-loads will be launched from each catapult using a specific test sequence to verify that the catapult and its components are operating satisfactorily.
To date PCU Gerald R. Ford is 90 percent complete and 1550 Sailors have reported for introduction and training. CVN 78 will be commissioned in March 2016.
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National Military News
WASHINGTON (May 14, 2015) Sailors of the Year stand at attention at the end of their promotion ceremony at the Navy Memorial. Chief Construction Mechanic Jimie Bartholomew, representing U.S. Navy Reserve, Chief Steel Worker Brenton W. Heisserer, representing U.S. Navy Shore, Chief Boatswain's Mate Joe A. Mendoza, representing U.S. Fleet Forces, and Chief Logistics Specialist Blanca A. Sanchez, representing U.S. Pacific Fleet, were meritoriously advanced from petty officer 1st. class to chief petty officers. U.S. Navy photo by MC2 Eric Lockwood.
Nomination for next Chief of Naval Operations announced
by Chief Mass Communication Specialist Julianne Metzger, Chief of Naval Operations Public Affairs
WASHINGTON (NNS) -- Defense Secretary Ashton Carter announced today during a Pentagon press briefing that he has recommended Adm. John M. Richardson as the next Chief of Naval Operations (CNO). A career submarine officer, Richardson is currently director, Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program. If confirmed, Richardson will replace Adm. Jonathan W. Greenert who has been CNO since September 2011. Greenert will retire this fall after 40 years of naval service.
"John Richardson is one of our finest officers and I have great confidence that he is the right leader for our Navy," said Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus.
Greenert also praised Richardson if confirmed, "Admiral John Richardson is an ideal strategic leader to keep our Navy moving forward," he said.
"He cares about our Sailors, has the background and experience in dealing with tough challenges combined with expert judgment that will guide our Navy well," Greenert continued. "He has played a fundamental role in addressing many of our current and future challenges. I am confident he will ensure our Navy's seapower, now and in the future."
Richardson, 55, hails from Petersburg, Virginia. He graduated with a degree in Physics from the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, Md. in 1982. Richardson also holds Masters Degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, and the National War College.
As one of the Navy's top leaders, Richardson has a broad-based record as an operational commander. Richardson commanded the nuclear attack submarine USS Honolulu (SSN 718), served as a naval aide to the President of the United States, as well as numerous other assignments through his career. Richardson received the prestigious Vice Adm. James Stockdale for inspirational leadership award in 2001, among a long list of personal and unit awards.
Navy declares Initial Operational Capability for new Rolling Airframe Missile
From PEO IWS Public Affairs
WASHINGTON (NNS) -- The U.S. Navy successfully achieved Initial Operational Capability (IOC) for the Block 2 Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM) aboard the amphibious transport dock ship USS Arlington (LPD 24) May 15.
RAM is a highly successful, 39-year U.S. cooperative program with the German government that has yielded the U.S. taxpayer more than $800 million in cost avoidance and has delivered arguably one of the most capable anti-ship cruise missile defense systems in the world. The new RAM Block 2 missile is designed to counter advanced anti-ship cruise missile threats that U.S. and Allied Navies face today.
"We're very excited about the significantly increased capability Block 2 gives our warfighters. It could not have been done without the outstanding cooperation between the U.S. and German governments," said Capt. Craig Bowden, RAM program manager. "This program has become the hallmark of transatlantic cooperation."
The IOC declaration is the culmination of cooperative developmental and operational testing events between the U.S. Navy and the German government spanning the last two years. Compared to previous configurations, Block 2 provides significantly improved kinematic performance in maneuverability and range as well as a more sophisticated radio frequency receiver. These improvements allow RAM to increase the battlespace and engage low probability of intercept threats at longer ranges.
Prior to the IOC declaration, the U.S. Navy and German government successfully demonstrated the enhanced ship self-defense effectiveness of the Block 2 RAM during testing at the Pacific Missile Range Center at Point Mugu, California, between May 2013 and March 2015.
Steven Holsworth, U.S. national deputy program manager for RAM, said, "Through cooperation, this program has continuously met all challenges and has successfully produced more than 3000 RAM missiles (Block 0, 1A, 2) and 200 launchers. The strength of the RAM community is also evident in the high success rate in our 450-plus live firing events in its history. The on-time, on-cost delivery of the first Block 2 missiles embodies the best of the U.S. and German design/production capabilities. With the completion of recent test events, we are ready to write the next chapter of the RAM success story by delivering the enhanced capability to the U.S., German, and allied warships on which RAM is deployed."
Andrea Schwarz, RAM deputy program manager from Germany concurred. "Since our inception in 1976, the U.S. and Germany have cooperatively developed, produced, and supported the RAM program through 16 international agreements/amendments. It is a testament to the program that both countries have remained steadfast in their commitment and cooperation, including 50/50 government contributions and industry work share. With the introduction of Block 2, we continue the cooperative spirit and technical excellence that has protected our Navies over the past three decades."
In 2014, the program had a highly successful test and evaluation run where it scored hits on several extremely challenging target sets. Currently, RAM protects the U.S Navy's CVN, LCS, LHA, LHD, LSD and LPD 17 class warships and twenty-two of Germany's warships.
The RAM Program Office is aligned with Program Executive Office for Integrated Warfare Systems, which manages surface ship and submarine combat technologies and systems, and coordinates Navy enterprise solutions across ship platforms.
San Diego Military News
U.S. 3rd Fleet participates in Exercise Ardent Sentry 2015
by Lt. Ken Hagihara, NR Commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet Public Affairs
SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- Commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet participated in training exercise Ardent Sentry 15 (AS15), May 11-15.
A Joint Exercise Program (JEP) led by North American Aerospace Defense (NORAD) and U.S. Northern Command (USNORTHCOM), AS15 is conducted primarily as an exercise focused on defense support of civil authorities (DSCA).
AS15 provides a highly complex, integrated training environment where federal, state and local emergency responders practice the procedures and validate the processes that would be implemented during times of crisis or emergency. The exercise simulated a catastrophic magnitude 7.8 earthquake that impacted eight Southern California counties.
According to Lt. Cmdr. Todd Stansfield, U.S. 3rd Fleet Maritime Command Element (MCE) future operations officer, 3rd Fleet served as the command element for all naval forces responding to the disaster simulated during AS15.
Addressing the role of 3rd Fleet in support of the overall DSCA mission, he explained, "We are responsible for the planning, exercising, and execution of disaster response operations in support of FEMA in California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, and Hawaii."
Stansfield said the 3rd Fleet MCE team supporting AS15 was comprised of DSCA-trained active duty and reserve personnel from a wide variety of designators who brought valuable knowledge and expertise to successfully support and execute the requirements in the various exercise scenarios, focused in particular on search and rescue operations.
Other Navy participants included Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific (HSCWP), Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG) 3, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Group (EODGRU) 1, Naval Construction Group (NCG) 1, and Navy Region Southwest (NRSW).
Joint, interagency and international relationships strengthen U.S. 3rd Fleet's ability to respond to crises and protect the collective maritime interests of the U.S. and its allies and partners.
Navy Nurse Corps celebrates 107th birthday
by MC2 Yasmine T. Muhammad,
Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton Public Affairs
CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. (NNS) -- Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton staff helped the Navy Nurse Corps celebrate 107 years of service with a cake cutting ceremony May 13.
During the ceremony, letters were read from the Surgeon General of the Navy and the heads of the Navy's Nurse Corps, Medical Corps, Medical Service Corps, Dental Corps, Hospital Corps and the Army Nurse Corps thanking the Navy Nurse Corps for their unwavering service.
"Our Navy Nurse Corps is essential to our force health protection and readiness. These men and women ensure we have a healthy force, ready to protect and serve at a moment's notice. They selflessly care for our Sailors, Marines, and their families, around the world, at home, and on the front lines, anytime, anywhere," said Vice Adm. Matthew Nathan, Surgeon General of the Navy, in his Navy Nurse Corps birthday message.
The Navy Nurse Corps was established by Congress in May of 1908. In October of 1908, the first nurses, later called "The Sacred Twenty," reported for duty at the Naval Medical School Hospital in Washington D.C., which is now home of the Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery.
Today more than 4,000 active duty and reserve Navy nurses are serving in operational, humanitarian, and traditional missions on the home front and abroad. These men and women provide professional nursing care in peacetime and wartime under ordinary and extraordinary circumstances.
NHCP currently has 220 military and civilian nurses on staff, which includes licensed practical nurses, registered nurses, and nurse practitioners. These nurses provide care to the hospital's beneficiaries in areas that include Medical Home Port (primary care), the Emergency Department, Occupational Health, the Ambulatory Procedure Unit, the Operating Room, and the Branch Health Clinics.
Carl Vinson Strike Group conducts exercises with Malaysian military
by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Travis S. Alston, USS Carl Vinson Public Affairs
USS CARL VINSON, At Sea (NNS) -- Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group, Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 17, and Destroyer Squadron 1 participated in various bi-lateral training events May 10 in the South China Sea with Malaysian air and surface units in support of Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet theater security cooperation objectivesThe strike group conducted a photo exercise (PHOTOEX), a 5-inch gun exercise, dissimilar air combat training (DACT), and concluded with an expendable maneuverable acoustic training target (EMATT) exercise.
"We greatly value our relationship with the Royal Malaysian military," said Rear Adm. Chris Grady, Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group commander. "Exercises like these are mutually beneficial and show our commitment to nurturing and deepening our bi-lateral ties with partner nations throughout the region."
During the DACT portion of the training, CVW 17 F/A-18 Hornets and Super Hornets joined Malaysian SU-30, MiG-29N, and FA-18D Hornets to train in multiple combat scenarios. Events ranged from single aircraft engaging single aircraft to complex multi-aircraft combat scenarios. With the Malaysian SU-30s maneuvering at speeds estimated close to Mach 1, training was aggressive and realistic.
The EMATT exercise allowed the guided-missile USS Gridley (DDG 101) to work with their Royal Malaysian Navy counterpart, KD LEKIR (FGS 26), and practice dual-ship anti-submarine warfare.
"The EMATT exercise allowed both U.S. and Malaysian navies to track a live target that was threat representative," said Lt. Cmdr. Shelby Nikitin, DESRON 1 operations officer. "This was excellent practice for both. We were impressed with the capabilities of the Royal Malaysian Navy."
"Exercises like this validate our training and allows us to see what our aircraft can do," said Cmdr. Dwayne Ducommun, CVNSG operations officer. "When you're flying the same aircraft that you are fighting or training against, it comes down to the skill of the pilot, but when you have aircraft that aren't the same, both technology and the skill of the pilot are tested."
The United States and Malaysia share a diverse and expanding partnership and cooperate closely on a number of security matters, including counterterrorism, maritime domain awareness, and regional stability.
The Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group is operating in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations supporting maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region.
National Navy News
Like a Chief - required deadlines
by MC1 Ian P. Lundy, Navy Personnel Command Public Affairs
MILLINGTON, Tenn. (NNS) -- The E7 Chief Petty Officer (CPO) Selection Board will convene June 22. Deadlines are rapidly approaching for candidates and their commands to ensure Official Military Personnel Files (OMPF) are up-to-date.
Some files that might improve a candidate's potential to stand out during selection are not necessarily a part of the two-criterion system used for selection. According to NAVADMIN 222/14, the selection board will review the OMPF and official enlisted performance evaluation of all candidates. Because of volume, an OMPF is only updated at certain points during the course of a Sailor's career, such as change of duty station. If documents are missing from a candidate's OMPF, a candidate may submit those documents along with a cover letter, also known as a letter to the board (LBT), for review and selection.
"Many folks forget to send the accompanying cover letter when submitting additional information for review, and this is a must when sending any supporting material for the board to look at," said Sandra Hibbard, the E7 Board team lead, Navy Personnel Command (NPC) Customer Service Center (CSC). Joint Professional Military Education (JPME), Primary Professional Military Education (PPME), college diplomas and other certifications are good examples of documents that can be sent to the board with a cover letter.
According to Hibbard, "the board received approximately 11,300 submissions last year total ... which took about 10 business days to sort through." Hibbard also said, the earlier an eligible candidate can send their board packet for consideration with a cover letter, the better.
Packages submitted to the active-duty CPO board must be received by the NPC CSC no later than June 1. Hibbard said, "Packages and accompanying LBT must originate from the individual candidate."
Along with a cover letter, each document in the package must include the member's full social security number. If sent electronically, the subject of the email should also include the board number. Candidates may not send classified documents.
Refer to NAVADMIN 222/14 for guidance and mailing information for candidates who wish to submit a package through traditional mail or encrypted e-mail. NPC encourages all candidates to use alternative means to submit packages, other than the Safe Access File Exchange program (SAFE), due to an accreditation lapse.
The next two closest dates to keep in mind for the E7 selection timeline are: May 18 - Full Time Support (FTS) E7 selection board convenes and all eligibility requirements, to include any waivers, must have final approval prior to this date; and May 22 - active component (AC) board candidates changing ratings must be in their new rating to be considered as a candidate in the new rating.
For more information, visit the NPC Selection Boards web page at http://www.public.navy.mil/BUPERS-NPC/BOARDS/Pages/default.aspx or contact the NPC Customer Service Center at 866-U-ASK-NPC/866-827-5672 or UASKNPC@NAVY.MIL