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March 2013 Issue

SMIT Singapore Wins Contract for Salvage Operations After USS Guardian Crashes Into Reef
Salvaging operations began in February for the USS Guardian, a U.S. mine countermeasure vessel that crashed in January into the Tubbataha Reef, a United Nations’ World Heritage site in the Philippines, International Business Times reported. The U.S. Navy plans to dismantle the ship into three sections and decommission it, DefenseNews reported.

SMIT Singapore Pte Ltd. (Singapore) won a U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency contract for $24.9 million to provide emergency response and recovery operations support. This includes personnel, vessels and equipment for assessment, planning, stabilization, oil removal and vessel recovery. Seventy-two percent of the work will be done in the vicinity of the Tubbataha Reef and 15 percent will be done at Palawan, Philippines.

Operations began with the SMIT Borneo, a crane ship, anchoring into the Sulu Sea. It was to drop four anchors 10 meters away from the reef: two at the bow at 800 meters depth and two at the stern at 300 meters depth.

Work will be completed by December.

Bluefin to Give NRL Modified Knifefish for LFBB Development, Reliant UUV Work Continues
Bluefin Robotics Corp. (Quincy, Massachusetts) will produce a variation of the Knifefish UUV for the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL). Knifefish is a specialized Bluefin-21 UUV being developed for the Surface Mine Countermeasure UUV program, for which Bluefin is under subcontract to General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems (Fairfax, Virginia).

Bluefin completed the Knifefish preliminary design review earlier this year. The vehicle will be used to advance NRL’s low-frequency broadband (LFBB) payload technology and support its broader mission to move forward with basic and applied research in undersea warfare.

For the past 10 years, Bluefin and NRL have been working to develop and field the Reliant vehicle, a Bluefin-21 used as a science and technology system for the original LFBB development. In addition to Knifefish features, Reliant will be equipped with two-way Iridium communications, specialized sensors, a reacquisition capability and accommodation for an acoustic payload, including a towed receiver array. Bluefin will also deliver topside support equipment and graphical user interface software.

LCS-5 to Get Four New High-Powered Waterjets Designed to Lower Maintenance Costs
The U.S. Navy’s fifth littoral combat ship (LCS-5), Milwaukee, will be the first to have the Axial-Flow Waterjet Mk-1, the new high-power-density waterjets aimed at staving off rudder and propeller damage on high-speed ships. The waterjets, produced by the U.S. Office of Naval Research (ONR) Future Naval Capabilities program, have arrived at the Marinette Marine Corp. (Marinette, Wisconsin) shipyard, where LCS-5 is under construction.

Four of the waterjets will propel the LCS-5 to speeds exceeding 40 knots. Developed by Rolls-Royce Naval Marine Inc. (Walpole, Massachusetts), ONR and U.S. Naval Surface Warfare Center, Carderock Division, the Mk-1 can move nearly half a million gallons of seawater per minute, with more thrust per unit than existing commercial waterjets. The smaller, more efficient waterjets will also help avoid excessive maintenance costs associated with cavitation.

Full-scale sea trials for the waterjets on LCS-5 are expected to occur in the next 24 months.

Indian Navy Commissions INS Saryu For Heightened Surveillance Effort
The Indian Navy has commissioned the first of four domestically built offshore patrol vessels, INS Saryu (P57), at Goa Shipyard in Vasco, India, naval-technology.com reported. The 105-meter-long vessel, which can operate offshore on its own for a month, is intended to patrol the exclusive economic zone around the Andaman and Nicobar islands in response to increased maritime surveillance needs.

The vessel will conduct surface warfare missions, monitor sea communication and protect offshore assets. It has two SEMT Pielstick (Villepinte, France) diesel engines, and its weaponry includes a 76-millimeter Oto Melara gun, two 30-millimeter close-in weapon system guns and six chaff launchers. It also has a helicopter landing deck and hangar, and two rigid inflatable fast motor boats.

Delivery of the INS Sunayna, the second of the Saryu-class ships, to the Indian Navy is scheduled for May 2013.The remaining two ships, INS Sumitra and INS Sumedha will be delivered in the next year and a half.

The 2,300-ton Saryu-class ships can cruise at more than 25 knots and have a range of 6,000 nautical miles.

2014:  JAN | FEB | MARCH

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