VIDEO: Sea Cat (1963)

A short newsreel from British Pathé.

Marry this with an archived 1963 edition of Flight International highlighting the new missile system.

Aegis tower lifted onto Hobart, lead air warfare destroyer in new class

The Hobart-class is a class of three air warfare destroyers under construction for the Royal Australian Navy. The three new destroyers will replace the RAN’s four Adelaide-class frigates between 2016 and 2019. Fewer hulls with (theoretically) more functionality seems to be a global trend.

Aegis tower lifted onto Hobart

The main radar tower for the first of Australia’s three Air Warfare Destroyers, Hobart, has been successfully lifted into position.

The main radar tower for the first of Australia’s three Air Warfare Destroyers, Hobart, has been successfully lifted into position.

Minister for Defence Senator David Johnston confirmed progress on the Hobart was well advanced, with the Air Warfare Destroyer (AWD) Alliance successfully lifting the Aegis tower onto the ship structure.

“The Aegis tower is a complex block on the AWD because of specific requirements to ensure accuracy in build and the effectiveness of the SPY radar’s operation,” Senator Johnston said.

Aegis tower lifted onto Hobart.

Senator Johnston said the Aegis tower, constructed onsite at the ASC Shipyard at Techport, Adelaide, will house the four octagonal-shaped phased array panels of the Aegis AN/SPY-1D (V) search radar.

The achievement comes on the back of the significant milestone of the United States Navy’s recommendation that the Aegis Weapon System computer programs are ready for the on-board trial and activation of the combat system.

“The Aegis Weapon System is the nerve-centre of the destroyers and integrates a number of sensors and effectors to simultaneously detect, track and engage multiple air, surface and subsurface targets,” Senator Johnston said.

“The multi-function SPY radar is the main sensor for Aegis. The array faces send out beams of electromagnetic energy in all directions, providing a simultaneous and continuous search and tracking capability for hundreds of targets, providing the Royal Australian Navy with one of the most advanced warships in the world.”

Aegis tower lifted onto Hobart.

The acceptance of the Aegis computer programs by the US Navy follows extensive testing last year by developer Lockheed Martin and the US Navy, with involvement of the Defence Materiel Organisation and Royal Australian Navy.

http://news.navy.gov.au/en/Oct2013/Fleet/507#.UlSnYBBgHcw

OTDIH 21 August 1943

70-years ago today…

The U-boat war encounters the age of sail:

U-596, a Type VIIC U-boat on its 7th war patrol, Oblt. Victor-Wilhelm Nonn commanding, sunk 3 Allied vessels: the sailing ship Lily (132 GRT) sunk with eight shells from U-596’s deck gun about 20 miles north-northwest of Beirut; the sailing ship Namaz (50 GRT) sunk with thirteen shells from deck gun; the sailing ship Panikos (21 GRT) sunk with twenty-five shells from deck gun. During her 12 war patrols, U-506 would sink 41,411 GRT of Allied shipping. At the conclusion of her final patrol in 1944, U-596 was damaged by Allied bombing while in port. She was scuttled on 24 September 1944.

Cross section of a Type VIIC U-Boat.

From the shipyards:

USS Batfish (SS-310), a Balao-class submarine built by Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery, Maine, was commissioned into the United States Navy, Lt. Cdr. Wayne Rucker Merrill, USN commanding. After 26-years of service, Batfish was struck from the Naval Register in 1969. She is currently preserved as a war memorial in Muskogee, Oklahoma.

USS Batfish Memorial Park, Muskogee, Oklahoma.

USS Bunch (DE 694), a Buckley-class destroyer escort built by Defoe Boat and Marine Works, Bay City, Michigan, was commissioned into the United States Navy, Lt. Cdr. Alfred Alan Campbell, USNR commanding. After serving as an Atlantic escort, Bunch was converted to a high-speed transport (APD) and served in the Pacific, receiving two battle stars for her service. Placed in reserve in 1946, she was finally stuck from the Naval Register in 1964 and sold for scrap.

USS Bunch (DE 694) during sea trials, 1943.

And an accidental torpedoing:

HMS Belvoir (L32), a Hunt-class escort destroyer, Lt. J.F.D. Bush, DSC, RN commanding, accidentally torpedoed the American merchant Cape Mohican while escorting convoy MKF-122 in the Mediterranean. The convoy escorts had apparently sighted two darkened ships steaming ahead of the convoy and made their torpedo tubes ready, at 22.55 hours when they were trained to port for the second time a torpedo was fired accidentally by HMS Belvoir. She then immediately went to the assistance of Cape Mohican and escorted her to Malta.

HMS Belvoir (L32) Hunt class escort destroyer.

OTDIH 16 August 1943

70-years ago today…

USS Hill (DE 141) an Edsall-class destroyer escort built by Consolidated Steel, Orange, Tx, was commissioned into the United States Navy, Lt. Cdr. G. R. Keating, USN commanding.

USS Intrepid (CV 11) an Essex-class aircraft carrier built by Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co. was commissioned into the United States Navy, Capt. Thomas Lamison Sprague, USN commanding. Decommissioned in 1972, the Intrepid has been a museum ship in New York City since 1982.

USS Intrepid (CV 11)

HMS Capel (K 470) a Captain-class frigate built at Boston Navy Yard was commissioned into the Royal Navy, Lt. Bevil Grenfell Heslop, RN commanding.

USS J. R. Y. Blakely (DE 140) an Edsall-class destroyer built by Consolidated Steel, Orange, Tx was commissioned into the United States Navy, Cmdr. John H. Forshew, USN commanding.

USS Sloat (DE 245) an Edsall-class destroyer escort built by Brown Shipbuilding, Houston, Tx was commissioned into the United States Navy, Lt. Cdr. Edmund Ernest Garcia, USN commanding.

USS Welles (DD 628) a Bristol-class destroyer built by Seattle-Tacoma Shipbuilding was commissioned into the United States Navy, Lt. Cdr. Doyle Murray Coffee, USN commanding. Named after Gideon Welles, Lincoln’s Secretary of the Navy throughout the Civil War.

USS Welles (DD 628)

OTDIH 21 July 1943

70-years ago today…

Another good day for HM Submarines…

HMS Sickle, Lt. J.R. Drummond, DSC, RN commanding, torpedoed and damaged the Italian merchant ‘Oriani’ (2320 GRT) 8-miles WNW of Elba.

And a good day for the US Navy submarine force…

USS Haddock (SS-231) a Gato class submarine, Lt. Cdr. R.M. Davenport, USN commanding, torpedoed & sank the Japanese troop transport ‘Saipan Maru’ (5532 GRT) off Saipan in position 16°18’N, 134°04’E.

Not such as good day for the Kriegsmarine…

U-662 was sunk by depth charges from a Catalina aircraft in the South Atlantic in position in position 03.56N, 48.46W.

Close, but no cigar…

HMS Templar, Lt. D.J. Beckley, DSO, RN commanding, attacked the Italian submarine ‘Axum’ 5-miles NW of Calvi, Corsica. The Templar fired 7 torpedoes during a series of attacks… and all missed.

Construction news…

USS Herbert C. Jones (DE 137) an Edsall class destroyer escort, Lt.Cdr. Alfred Wiltz Gardes, Jr., USN commanding, was commissioned into the United States Navy.

And off the coast of Sicily…

The US Navy’s (6-inch gun) cruisers USS Brooklyn (CL-40), USS Savannah (CL-42) and USS Boise (CL-47) together with the Royal Navy’s Roberts-class (15-inch gun) monitor HMS Abercrombie lay off the coast of Sicily to provide naval gunfire support for 7th Army.

OTDIH 20th July 1943

On this day in history…

HM Submarines continued their run of luck in the Mediterranean…

HMS Safari (P221), Lt. R.B. Lakin, DSO, DSC, RN commanding, sunk the Italian vessel F50/Silvo Onorato (208 GRT) between Basita and Maddalena.

A couple of near misses…

Soviet Shchuka-class submarine ShCh-403 made a torpedo attack on a German convoy off Kongsfjord. Four torpedoes were fired against a target identified as a 6000 GRT merchant… and all four torpedoes missed.

USS Pompano (SS-181), Lt. Cdr. W. M. Thomas commanding, torpedoed and damaged the Japanese transport ship Uyo Maru (6376 GRT) east of Honshu, Japan.

Allied ship commissionings…

The Bouge-class escort carrier USS Baffins (CVE-35) was commissioned into Royal Navy service as HMS Ameer (D01), Capt. Gerald Douglas Yates, RN commanding.

USS Scott (DE 214) a Buckley-class destroyer escort was commissioned into the United States Navy, Lt.Cdr. Claude Siceluff Kirkpatrick, USN commanding.

USS Burke (DE 215) a Buckley-class destroyer escort was commissioned into the United States Navy, Lt.Cdr. Edwin K. Winn, USNR commanding.

And unfortunately…

USS PT-106, an US Navy Elco 80’ motor torpedo boat, was mistakenly sunk by USAAF B-25s in Ferguson Passage, Solomon Islands in position 08º15’S, 156º53’E.

OTDIH 19th July 1943

On this day in history…

19th July 1943 was a yet another good day for HM Submarines…

HMS Safari (Lt. R.B. Lakin, DSO, DSC, RN) sank the German barges Maria, Paula and the Italian armed yacht Margherita (88 GRT) with gunfire in the port of Favone, Corsica, France.

HMS Sickle (Lt. J.R. Drummond, DSC, RN) sank the Italian auxiliary minesweeper V 131/Amgiola Maria C. (65 GRT) with gunfire off Porto Vecchio, Italy.

And a good day for US Navy submarines…

USS Porpoise (Lt. Cdr. C.L. Bennett, USN) torpedoed and sank the Japanese troop transport Mikage Maru Nr.20 (2718 GRT) south of Wake Island.

And a good day for the Soviets…

Soviet submarine S-56 torpedoed and sank the German auxiliary patrol vessel NKi 09 / Alane (466 GRT) off the Tanafjord near Gamvik, Norway. (Incidentally, S-56 is preserved as a museum ship in Vladivostok if you’re ever out that way.)

Also on this day…

The Tribal class destroyer HMCS Huron (G24) was commissioned into the Royal Canadian Navy under command of Lt. Cdr. H. S. Rayner, DSC, RN.

The River class frigate HMS Inver (K302) was commissioned into the Royal Navy under command of Lt. F. H. Gray, RNR.

The Edsall class destroyer escort USS Keith (DE 241) was commissioned into the United States Navy under command of Lt. D. Cochran, USN.