USS COLE will be re-launched on 15 September 2001 from a floating dry dock at Northrop Grumman Ship Systems' Ingalls Operations, Pascagoula, MS. The ship will be moved to a nearby outfitting pier for completion of remaining work and will be returned to the Fleet in April 2002.
The Naval Sea Systems Command's Supervisor of Shipbuilding, Conversion, and Repair, Pascagoula, MS (SUPSHIP) oversaw the restoration effort that commenced in March of this year, following the ship's return to the United States. Work aboard COLE consisted of structural repairs to replace areas damaged in the 12 October 2000 explosion in Aden, replacement of damaged or unserviceable equipment, and removal and evaluation and/or re-certification of critical systems such as shafting and propellers. The repair process was challenging due to the complexity of the Arleigh Burke Class DDG and the pace at which the repairs were performed. Certain portions of the repair, such as the removal and re-installation of the starboard propulsion train were conducted for the first time outside
of new construction. Northrop Grumman Ship Systems' intimate knowledge of the construction of this class of ship was instrumental in the success of the repairs.
Following the re-launch, work will be completed on component systems assemblies, alignment of machinery, energizing, testing, and alignment of all systems, and completion of logistics and supply support outfitting. COLE will then be turned over to the crew for training and re-certification.
The outstanding efforts of the SUPSHIP/Northrop team allowed the repairs of USS COLE to occur in an expeditious manner and will allow COLE to return for duty with the Fleet by April 2002.
(Source: Navsea Newswire, By Pat Dolan, NAVSEA Office of Congressional and Public Affairs)