By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class (SW) Brian Goodwin, Expeditionary Strike Group Public Affairs
The amphibious transport dock ship USS San Antonio (LPD 17) deployed Aug. 28 as part of the Iwo Jima Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG), marking the first deployment of a ship in the technologically advanced class of warships. The deployment introduces new technology and capabilities never before seen in any ESG. One example of this technology is the shipwide area network (SWAN).
Communications with other ships has always been key to the Navy's success. has taken communications to the next level. Targeting surface threats with weapons has also benefited from the new technology. Another force protection measure added to the transport dock ship is 's arsenal of small boats.
Other design features make day-to-day life more comfortable for the Sailors, while also increasing efficiency. The engineers aboard keep much cooler thanks to unmanned engine rooms. This is possible due to the engineering control system (ECS).
can also serve as a small-scale hospital ship, and boasts a state-of-the-art medical department that is equipped to provide the highest quality of care with the inclusion of systems like Medical Web.
The design of the ship has also made moving supplies throughout the ship less laborious.
A deployment is an opportune time to work on qualifications and further in-rate knowledge. 's Total Ship Training System provides shipwide access to computer-based lessons.
San Antonio is part of the Iwo Jima Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG), which also consists of the amphibious assault ship USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7); the dock-landing ship USS Carter Hall (LSD 50); the guided-missile cruiser USS Vella Gulf (CG 72); the guided-missile destroyer USS Ramage (DDG 61); all homeported at Norfolk, Va.; the guided-missile destroyer USS Roosevelt (DDG 80), homeported at Mayport, Fla.; and the fast attack submarine USS Hartford (SSN 768), homeported at Groton, Conn.
The strike group is currently en route to the Navy's 5th and 6th Fleet areas of responsibility in support of Maritime Security Operations (MSO). MSO helps set the conditions for security and stability in the maritime environment, as well as complement the counterterrorism and security efforts of regional nations.
The strike group will also support the other tenets of the Navy's Maritime Strategy, which include forward presence, deterrence, sea control, power projection, and humanitarian assistance/disaster response. The Maritime Strategy represents a new vision for the 21st century and establishes new capabilities to codify longstanding challenges, while maintaining the focus on enduring missions.