Marine Link
Monday, December 18, 2017

British Navy News

Team Effort Thwarts Caribbean Smuggling Attempt

A joint British Navy and U.S. Coast Guard team stopped more than 2,000 pounds of cocaine from being smuggled through the Caribbean today. A British Navy aircraft, flying a routine patrol for Joint Interagency Task Force South, spotted a suspicious go-fast smuggling boat south of Haiti and a multi-unit pursuit ensued that was coordinated by the Coast Guard's Greater Antilles Section (GANTSEC), based in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The HMS Manchester, A British Navy vessel with an embarked U.S. Coast Guard law enforcement detachment (LEDET), was notified of the suspect vessel and diverted to intercept it. During the pursuit the smugglers ejected their contraband overboard and Manchester handed off the pursuit to a second British warship…

U.S. and British Navies Aid Evacuation Efforts

The International Tribune has reported that a five-ship United States naval group and a British flotilla were en route to Lebanon today to aid in evacuation efforts. The Navy said it was sending a strike group led by the amphibious-assault ship Iwo Jima to assist in the departure of some of the 25,000 Americans in Lebanon. The ships have hospital facilities, and carry 2,200 marines of the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit. That unit includes a helicopter squadron that has already ferried scores of Americans to safety from Beirut, beginning with children, the elderly and those with medical problems. The marine unit is “special operations-capable,” the Navy said.

Wreckage of USS Ward Found in the Philippines

Wheelhouse of the USS Ward (Photo courtesy of Paul G. Allen)

The U.S. Navy warship that famously fired the first American shot in World War II has been found resting on the seabed in Ormoc Bay near Ponson Island in the Philippines. The historic vessel USS Ward was discovered and documented by Microsoft co-founder and philanthropist Paul G. Allen's expedition crew aboard Research Vessel (R/V) Petrel, who has now released video images just prior to the anniversary of the December 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor. At 6:45 a.m. on Sunday, December 7…

U.S. and British Navies Save 27 Crew Members from Sinking Cargo Vessel

From U.S. Naval Forces Central Command/U.S. Twenty-seven crew members of a sinking Egyptian-flagged cargo vessel were saved approximately 350 miles off the coast of Oman June 24 by the U.S. and British navies. The 24-year-old general cargo ship, Green Glory, reportedly struggled with an engine fire at approximately 5 p.m. the evening of June 23. Heavy seas in the area caused Green Glory to take on water, and a “mayday” call went out at approximately 5:54 p.m. The Royal Navy’s auxiliary ship, RFA Sir Tristram, was the closest coalition ship to the stricken vessel and provided assistance throughout the night. Although Green Glory was able to restart its engines in the middle of the night, the vessel was still dead-in-the-water and continued to flounder. The U.S.

Daewoo Shipbuilding Signs MOU to Build Ships For Peruvian Navy

Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co. said that it has signed a memorandum of understanding with Peru to build ships for the country's navy as part of the South Korean company's plan to raise exports of submarines and other military vessels. "The initial pact gives us exclusive rights to build submarines and multi-role support ships if we clinch a final deal with the Peruvian government," said Daewoo Shipbuilding Chief Executive Ko Jae-ho.  The pact also includes maintenance and upgrades of submarines for the Peruvian Navy.  The MOU comes after Daewoo signed a deal last year to sell $1.1 billion worth of submarines to Indonesia. Early this year, it received a $704 million contract to build Military Afloat Reach and Sustainability, or MARS, tankers for the British Navy.  

German Navy Helps Deliver Somali Migrant's Baby After Rescue

German navy staff helped deliver a Somali migrant's baby hours after the mother was rescued from the Mediterranean sea, the German armed forces said on Tuesday. Rahma, 33, from Mogadishu, gave birth to a baby girl, Sophia, on board the German rescue boat 'Schleswig Holstein' as it headed for the Italian coast. She was travelling alone at the end of a five-month journey, the Bundeswehr said. Officers said Sophia, who weighed 3 kg (about 7 pounds) at birth, was doing well. She is thought to be the first baby ever born on a German naval vessel. Her mother was one of 4,000 migrants rescued in the Mediterranean over the weekend. She was picked up first by the British navy before being transferred to the German vessel and taken to a hospital for checks after the ship docked in Taranto…

SSP Offshore Appoints Illingworth CEO

Gary Quenan, Chairman of SSP Offshore Inc., announced that Paul Illingworth has agreed to join SSP Offshore as Chief Executive Officer. Illingworth has over 30 years experience in the offshore oil and gas business, prior to which he served seven years in the British Navy. He has a degree in Nautical Studies from London City Polytechnic (1980) and a Master Mariner Certificate (Class 1) from Lowestoft Nautical College (1984). Illingworth has served in a variety of senior executive capacities with companies engaged in the offshore oil and gas service industry. Since 2001, Illingworth has served as Senior Vice President in charge of global business development and as divisional President for one of the leading international companies engaged in the FPSO and FPDSO industry.

More than 1,300 Migrants Rescued at Sea in One Day

More than 1,300 migrants were rescued in 13 separate missions in the Mediterranean on Friday, bringing the total helped over the last three days to more than 2,600, the coast guard said. The migrants, who were aboard 13 vessels, were saved in the central Mediterranean by ships from the Italian coast guard, the Italian and British navies, merchant ships and vessels operated by non-government organisations, a statement said. Another 1,300 were rescued on Wednesday. The voyage from Libya across the Mediterranean to Italy is currently the main route to Europe for migrants. A record 181,000 made the journey last year, most on flimsy boats run by people-smugglers. More than 5,000 are believed to have died attempting the crossing in 2016.

Indian Navy 'Coast to Coast' Rally

Photo: Indian Navy

The final leg of "Coast to Coast" rally organized by Indian Navy as part of Social Outreach Programme was flagged off from Visakhapatnam on 28 March 2017 by Vice Admiral Atul Kumar Jain AVSM, VSM, Chief of Staff Eastern Naval Command. The outreach programme is an initiative of the Southern Naval Command organized as part of celebrations to commemorate the Platinum Jubilee of INS Valsura. The team arrived Visakhapatnam Tuesday afternoon and interacted with school children to spread awareness about Indian Navy. The rally is now heading back to Jamnagar touching Hyderabad and Pune enroute.

Dubai-based Counter-Piracy Team Warns Mariners

Boarding Operation: Photo credit MOD

With the ending of this year's monsoon season the British Navy reinforces their warning to seafarers to beware pirates. Attacks by ‘pirate action groups’ trying to hijack merchant shipping off the Horn of Africa are expected to increase, which is the business end of the Royal Navy’s efforts to curb the scourge of modern-day piracy and wider maritime crime in the region – and it’s about to get busier. To that end, a small, specialist Royal Navy team based in Dubai has reinforced its efforts to warn mariners of the dangers posed.

BAE Systems Gets $1.3b for New UK Warships

Image: BAE Systems

The U.K. Ministry of Defense has signed a $1.3 billion contract with BAE Systems for equipment to build the next generation of warships for the British navy, Prime Minister David Cameron announced today. BAE Systems has been working on plans to provide Britain with 13 new warships since 2010, Reuters reported, adding that the new contract enables the shipbuilder to continue developing the project by investing in the equipment and facilities needed before building can begin. According to the U.K.

BAE Systems Awarded $385 mln Contract to Design Submarine

A Computer Graphic Image of a Successor class submarine (Photo: BAE Systems)

British Navy has awarded BAE Systems PLC a £257 million ($385 million) contract to complete design work on the country’s next submarine capable of firing nuclear warhead-equipped ballistic missiles. Britain plans to replace the Royal Navy’s Vanguard-class submarines that provide its nuclear weapons force from 2028. The money is on top of almost GBP650mln of contracts the defence group won three years ago for early design work on the submarines, known as the Successor class. BAE said the latest round of funding will support 1…

Indian Navy 'Coast to Coast' Rally Team Arrives at Indian Naval Academy

Indian Navy 'Coast to Coast' rally team arrives at Indian Naval Academy. Photo: Indian Navy

A 5-car rally team of Indian Navy’s Social Outreach Programme “Coast to Coast”, arrived at Indian Naval Academy on 21 March 2017. The rally is part of celebrations to commemorate the Platinum Jubilee of INS Valsura. The team was formally received by Captain Sumeet Kapoor, NM, Training Captain (Coord), Indian Naval Academy. INS Valsura is a 75 year old establishment of the Indian Navy located at Jamnagar, Gujarat. The establishment is a premier training institute for the Electrical Engineers of the Indian Navy.

INS Virat Caught Fire, One Died

INS Viraat. Pic: Indian Navy

One sailor was killed and three others were injured after a fire broke out onboard India's soon to be decommissioned aircraft carrier INS Viraat in Goa. While the incident was quickly brought under control, four sailors who were present at the scene and combating the fire sustained injury from the smoke. Chief Engineering Mechanic Ashu Singh having suffered smoke inhalation was reportedly shifted to the naval hospital in Goa where he died. Also, reports said that three others had sustained injuries in the fire after inhaling smoke.

Navy Submarines Begin Arctic Ocean Exercises

Arctic-bound USS New Mexico: USN official photo

Virginia-class attack submarine USS New Mexico (SSN 779) and Los Angeles-class attack submarine USS Hampton (SSN 767) have commenced Ice Exercise 2014 (ICEX 2014) in the Arctic Ocean, says Commander,  US Submarine Forces. "In keeping with the Department of Defense's Arctic Objectives, the Submarine Force uses Ice Exercises to prepare for a wide range of challenges and contingencies," said Capt. Paul Whitescarver, the camp's officer in tactical command and operations officer at Commander, Submarine Force Atlantic.

Infrared Systems Protect UK Navy Ships at Sea

HGH’s Spynel-S 3500 as seen above, top right on top of container, on the integrated, mobile C2S system from Qinetiq (Photo: HGH)

International manufacturer of panoramic infrared thermal imaging systems HGH Infrared Systems was selected by the British Navy to incorporate its Spynel-S 3500 into an integrated Compact Combat System (C2S) for situational awareness and ship-based protection against small fast inshore attack crafts (FIACs). The system has already been tested in trials in the U.K. and will be used in part toward securing war ships in perilous locations. Leading the project is U.K.-based Qinetiq…

Offshore Survey of World's Most Remote Inhabited Territory

HMS Protector & Sailors: Photo credit MOD

British navy ice patrol ship 'HMS Protector' conducts the first systematic survey since the 1970's of waters off Tristan da Cunha in the South Atlantic. In the first survey of the area to be conducted using modern techniques, HMS Protector used her motorboat and onboard systems to make a multibeam echo sounder survey of the Edinburgh Anchorages. The territory is the most remote inhabited archipelago in the world, lying 1,750 miles (2,816km) from the nearest land, South Africa, and 2,088 miles (3,360km) from South America.

Argentinean Sub Chased by Helicopter before Vanishing

File photo: TR-1700 Class submarines San Juan and Santa Cruz (Photo: Martín Otero - Base Naval Mar del Plata (BNMP))

A family member of one of the sailors aboard missing Argentinean submarine ARA San Juan is claiming the vessel was chased by a British helicopter and a Chilean ship before it vanished in mid-November. Jessica Medina, the sister of one of the 44 submariners aboard the missing San Juan, told an Argentinean newspaper that she received mysterious WhatsApp messages from her brother Roberto Daniel prior to the sub’s disappearance that claimed San Juan was being chased while sailing near the Falkland Islands.

US, UK Navies Plan Future Cooperation

Leaders of the U.S. and British navies agreed on a shared vision for closer cooperation Dec. 11, the culmination of a yearlong effort that will build on a long-standing maritime partnership over the next 15 years. Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jonathan Greenert and his counterpart in the United Kingdom, First Sea Lord Sir George Zambellas, signed a combined strategic narrative that articulates a shared vision for deeper cooperation between the U.S. Navy (USN) and the Royal Navy (RN). "The United States and the United Kingdom rely on our navies to project power in critical regions and to protect the freedom of navigation that underpins the global economy," said Greenert.

Russian Sub Rescue Update: Too Little, Too Late?

Indecision from Russia regarding help from foreign nations in aiding efforts to rescue an estimated 118 sailors trapped in a Nuclear submarine lying on the bottom of the Barents Sea evaporated today, as Norway said that divers due to join a British bid to save 118 Russian sailors trapped in a submarine on the bed of the Barents Sea would arrive on Saturday. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov said on Thursday the situation around the sunken nuclear submarine Kursk was "next to catastrophic", but he hoped chances remained to save its 118 crew, Russian news agencies reported. "During the past night there were no changes for better or worse," Interfax news agency quoted Kasyanov as telling a government meeting.

Russian Sub Rescue Update: Too Little, Too Late?

Indecision from Russia regarding help from foreign nations in aiding efforts to rescue an estimated 118 sailors trapped in a Nuclear submarine lying on the bottom of the Barents Sea evaporated today, as Norway said that divers due to join a British bid to save 118 Russian sailors trapped in a submarine on the bed of the Barents Sea would arrive on Saturday. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov said on Thursday the situation around the sunken nuclear submarine Kursk was "next to catastrophic", but he hoped chances remained to save its 118 crew, Russian news agencies reported. "During the past night there were no changes for better or worse," Interfax news agency quoted Kasyanov as telling a government meeting.

Is DD21 Program In Peril?

Prospects for a proposed all-new $30 billion advanced Navy destroyer foundered on Tuesday, undercut by a study carried out for Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. The boom was lowered on the ship, known as DD 21, by an influential panel advising Rumsfeld on ways to "transform" the U.S. military into a more lethal, agile force. "We didn't see a substantial difference in operational capabilities in the DD 21 compared to the other (existing U.S. Navy) systems," panel chairman James McCarthy told a Pentagon news briefing. Competing to design the destroyer are teams led by General Dynamics Corp.'s Bath Iron Works with Lockheed Martin Corp. on the one hand, and Northrop Grumman Corp.'s Ingalls Shipyard with Raytheon Co. on the other.

World's Biggest Floating Diamond Processing Vessel Sets Sail

The world's biggest floating diamond processing vessel will set sail for the first time within three weeks and should be in position off Namibia before Christmas, the Namibian Minerals Corporation (NAMCO) said. "This is the biggest offshore diamond processing plant in the world," NAMCO chairman Alastair Holberton told reporters on a tour of the ship in Cape Town harbor. "We expect that in its first work up year in operation it will harvest 200,000 carats of diamonds worth about $30 million," he added. Geologists estimate that up to three billion carats of diamonds lie off the Namibian and South African coasts. NAMCO has four mining vessels, including the new vessel, MV Ya Toivo, to comb the sea bed. Holberton said the latest project had cost NAMCO 200 million rand ($25.71 million).

Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover Dec 2017 - The Great Ships of 2017

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