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USS Enterprise (CVN 65)

Newsletter Edition

“We are Legend”

January 28, 2012 Issue

Pri-Fly Sailors on Lookout Atop Enterprise Story and photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class (SW) Peter Melkus USS ENTERPRISE, At Sea – As pilots assigned to the 26, a small group of vigilant Sailors are tracking their every squadrons of Carrier Air Wing 1 continue to earn flight hours movement from their ‘perch’ atop the 50-year-old ship. aboard the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN 65) during The ‘perch’ is known as Primary Flight Control (Pri-Fly) - a the ship’s composite training unit exercise (COMPTUEX) Jan. small room towering seven stories above Enterprise’s flight deck that provides its occupants a panoramic view of deck operations below. Located on the 0-11 level, Pri-Fly is the watch station for a crew of around 10 Sailors; all with a primary mission of ensuring Enterprise aircraft are safely launched and recovered. Monitoring an average of 90 aircraft take-offs and arrested landings on a daily basis, often with less than a minute (sometimes seconds) between launch and recovery operations, the Pri-Fly crew must constantly survey all flight and deck operations to help keep pilots and flight deck personnel out of harm’s way in one of the world’s most dangerous working environments. Pri-Fly is manned by Air Department’s V-0 and V-2 division personnel and is supplemented during case I and case II operations by squadron aircrew in order to provide additional advice or support. The Air Boss, Cmdr. Wesley Bannister, and Mini Boss, Cmdr. Todd Bieber, are in charge of all Pri-Fly operations, which cover all aircraft activity within a five mile Interior Communications Electrician 3rd Class Mark Martin conducts an arresting gear cross-check in primary flight control during flight operations.

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Navy Avoids Most of Pentagon’s Latest Cuts By Christopher P. Cavas, Navy Times The U.S. fleet keeps its 11 aircraft caraggressive one, maybe even verging on riers as well as its 10 air wings. About a optimistic,” Deputy Defense Secretary third of the fleet of 22 cruisers — seven Ashton Carter told reporters. “From a ships — will be decommissioned early. A managerial point this is a better place to number of shipbuilding programs or hulls be.” The choice was “not a strategic deciwill be pushed back, but not — apparent- sion,” he emphasized. ly — killed. And there was no mention of One SSN 774 Virginia-class attack reductions in any Navy aviation program. submarine was shifted beyond the future All in all, as expected, no Navy years defense plan (FYDP), which program suffered a severe blow from the extends to fiscal 2017. The service had Pentagon’s 2013 budget-cutting ax. planned to order two subs per year from Defense Secretary Leon Panetta’s pre- 2013 through 2016. sentation Thursday afternoon, along with Future Virginia-class submarines will an accompanying briefing document, at have “design changes to increase cruise least filled in the blanks on a number of missile capacity.” Submarine builder Navy-related force structure and procure- General Dynamics and the Navy have ment issues: been developing a Virginia Payload ModProcurement of the SSBN(X) Ohioule fitted with four new Virginia Payload class replacement submarine will be Tubes, each capable of carrying and pushed back from 2019 to 2021. launching six cruise missiles. The brief“The schedule, as it was, was an ing did not mention when the changes

would take effect, but submarine officials have been aiming at the Block 5 submarine procurement to begin in 2019. The current big-deck amphibious assault ship force of nine ships will be maintained, although two older LSD 41-class landing ship docks will be decommissioned early. The next assault ship to be ordered, LHA 7, will slide from 2016 to 2017. Two Littoral Combat Ships and eight Joint High Speed Vessels will be “reduced” from the FYDP. There is no mention of cutting the ships from the overall buy, so they may be shifted later in the shipbuilding plan. A Navy spokesman said the Navy “remains committed to the 55-ship LCS fleet.” But a service spokesperson declined to restate the Navy’s commitment to the existing 10-ship JHSV program.


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Saturday, Jan. 28, 2012

Big E Happenings James E. Williams Flexes Undersea Warfare Capabilities By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class (SW) Daniel J. Meshel USS JAMES E. WILLIAMS, At Sea. – The Arleigh Burke“Integration is always a challenge. We all work for the class guided-missile destroyer USS James E. Williams strike group commander. He delegates his powers to a lot (DDG 95) is participating in an integrated anti-submarine of other people,” said Crosby. “And it takes a lot of other course (IAC) to certify Destroyer Squadron 2 (DESRON intelligent people to get the job done.” 2) during an ongoing composite unit training exercise Destroyers can be sent to operate autonomously by (COMPTUEX) with the Enterprise Carrier Strike Group, directive of the strike group commander. They can also Jan. 26. be designated a search and attack unit responsible for IAC is a series of exercises designed to effectively breaking away from the strike group for early detection of integrate all the surface and air assets involved in protecting submarines. the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN 65) in a strike Using combat acoustics, which is simply sound in water, group setting. The successful completion of the exercises destroyers are capable of detecting and analyzing surface will certify DESRON 2 for the squadron’s upcoming and undersea contacts using sound, navigation, and ranging deployment. (SONAR). These contacts can vary from marine animals “For our strike group, the high-value unit is the to submarines, and each has a unique frequency that allows [Enterprise],” said Sonar Technician Chief George H. for positive identification. Hudson, the leading sonar technician on James E. Williams. “We man watches 24 hours a day,” said Hudson. “We “Whenever the carrier is engaged in operations, we position keep a surface picture of contacts that we actively track on other units around the ship to protect it from attack.” our screens.” “The Enterprise is a mobile air force and the cornerstone Hudson and Crosby also act as evaluators who are of our Navy and foreign policy.” said Ensign Bryan responsible for tactically employing SONAR to find D. Crosby, the anti-submarine officer aboard James E. threats. Williams. “If we are incapable of protecting the Enterprise, When a threat is found they place the ship or ships which has hundreds of assets onboard and thousands of in their control into the most opportune environment to people, then our forward presence is hindered.” prosecute the threat. Anti-submarine warfare encompasses a wide-range of “At any given time one ship can be in tactical control of tactical responses to potential undersea threats necessary in several different ships and aircraft,” said Crosby. “You’re neutralizing hostile submarines, mines, and other dangers trying to utilize your assets to the upmost of their ability to protect high-value units and freedom of the seas. and extent.” “Submarines can block choke points and make While the goal of the exercise is to grant DESRON 2 commercial shipping near impossible,” said Crosby. “They operational certification, the exercises afford all vessels can also lay mines and render once navigable waters of the strike group occasion to not only refine established hostile.” skills, but to learn from their mistakes so they can operate Submarine stalking, engagements, and emergency at peak performance when deployed. maneuvers and evasions are a few of the scenarios within “We have 11 carriers,” said Crosby. “We always want to IAC. These exercises provide an opportunity for the keep 11 carriers so that we can be anywhere in the world in participating ships to flex their warfare capabilities through a moment’s notice and deter any foreign aggression against an integrated perspective. friendly forces.”

Do your part and

The Shuttle USS Enterprise (CVN 65)

CONSERVE WATER!! *keep your showers under 90 seconds!*

The Shuttle is published and printed daily underway and bi-weekly in port by the USS Enterprise (CVN 65) Media Department, FPO AE 09543-2810. This newspaper is an authorized publication for members of the Department of Defense. Please direct all story ideas, questions and comments to MC1 (SW) Steve Smith at smithsw@cvn65.navy.mil. Commanding Officer Capt. William C. Hamilton, Jr.

Executive Officer Capt. G. C. Huffman

Command Master Chief ABCM (AW/SW) Eric M. Young

Public Affairs Officer Lt. Cmdr. Sarah T. Self-Kyler

Editors MC2 (SW) Kristin L. Grover MCSN Harry Gordon

3M 3M Question of the Day: Who must authorize the changing of PMS from one work center to another? Yesterday’s ESWS answer: GINGERBREAD is an alert to suspected imitative deception.


Saturday, Jan. 28, 2012

The Shuttle

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Around the Navy Navy Tuition Assistance Policy Updated

Chief of Naval Personnel Public Affairs, Navy News Service WASHINGTON -- Policy changes to (MOU) with academic institutions the Department of Defense Tuition and DoD by January 1 to be eligible Assistance program and Navy to receive TA funding. DoD recently Voluntary Education were announced moved the due date to April 1. As in NAVADMIN 029/12, released Jan. a result, the Navy’s policies for 24. authorizing Tuition Assistance (TA) The changes were needed to provide have changed and Sailors will not better quality control over courses be able to use TA for courses at taken by service members as well as to intuitions without a signed MOU by reflect the realities of fiscal pressure to April 1. To help Sailors through this reduce Department of Defense (DoD) transition process, Sailors who meet spending. all requirements for TA and submit “Navy leadership is committed to a command-approved TA request providing Sailors the opportunity to prior to April 1 for courses beginning pursue their education goals,” said between April 1 and May 1 will be Chief of Naval Personnel Vice Adm. approved for TA regardless of their Scott Van Buskirk. “We know the institution’s DoD MOU status. investment we make in Sailors comes Sailors who meet all the above back to the Navy in numerous ways. requirements but whose TA request It’s an investment well made in our is submitted after April 1 will workforce to make them better critical be approved for TA only if their thinkers, performers and ultimately, institution has a signed DoD MOU. better Sailors.” Sailors can check the DoD MOU DoD instruction 13222.25 released status of the academic institution in March 2011 required a signed they are attending by going to www. Memorandum of Understanding DODMOU.com and clicking on the PRI-FLY continued radius of the ship. “Not too many people get to stand watch with their department head, which is one thing that makes this job unique,” said Interior Communications Electrician 3rd Class Mark Martin, an Improved Fresnel Lens Optical Landing System (IFLOLS) operator. Martin’s watch is one of several crucial Pri-Fly watches stood during flight operations, as the IFLOLS can calculate the approach path of an aircraft and help adjust its descending guide slope to ensure a safe landing. Since every type of aircraft behaves differently when it lands, it is essential that aircraft are properly identified prior to making a successful recovery. This is the job of the aft spotter. Spotters are required to memorize unique aircraft lighting configurations to identify aircraft at night or in low visibility. Once an aircraft has been identified, a landing gear watch relays the type of aircraft to the arresting gear engine rooms below deck to ensure the arresting gear engines below the flight deck are prepared. Forward spotters are responsible for observing aircraft launches and tracking whether their landing attempts were successful, touch-and-go or waved-off. They track and update this information on one of the Pri-Fly windows for easy viewing by anyone in the tower. Once an aircraft is

“Participating Institutions” tab. Sailors enrolled in Navy College Program for Afloat College Education (NCPACE) courses will not be affected by the DoD MOU requirement. The NAVADMIN also outlines the requirement for Sailors to obtain a satisfactory grade of a “D” for undergraduate-level courses and a “C” for graduate-level courses. Sailors who fail to obtain a satisfactory grade will be required to payback TA funds. The Navy will continue to provide TA funds up through the master’s degree level for both officers and enlisted personnel. However, effective with the release of the NAVADMIN, the Navy will no longer authorize TA funding for new program starts above the master’s degree level. The approximately 550 officers and enlisted actively pursuing doctorallevel degrees before the release of the NAVADMIN will be able to continue until completion of their degree program.

airborne, a status board operator displays every aircraft in the air and updates information including remaining fuel and the direction and distance to alternate landing sites. The coordination of information between all Pri-Fly watch stations is the responsibility of the tower supervisor. It is their job to pass along data and provide heightened situational awareness to the entire Pri-Fly team. “We’re like a small collection of human radars in here,” said Airman Dennis Baez, the tower supervisor for Pri-Fly’s day shift. “I feel very fortunate to be working in the tower. The knowledge we develop here is priceless and it’s a oncein-a-lifetime experience that I will always appreciate.” Thanks to the surveillance and team effort put forth by Pri-Fly watch standers, Enterprise remains one of the safest airports at sea. “I enjoy the job I have here, and it’s the great performance by our Sailors like those in the tower that make it so enjoyable,” said Bannister. “We play an integral role in exercises like COMPTUEX and work hard to make sure we execute that role to perfection each day.” Enterprise is currently underway conducting training exercises and evolutions as part of a composite training unit exercise (COMPTUEX) in preparation for the ship’s 22nd and final deployment following 50 years of naval service.


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Saturday, Jan. 28, 2012

Sailors of the Day Operations Specialist 2nd Class Jason S. Terry

OS2 Jason Terry from Hemet, Calif., joined the Navy three and a half years ago to support his family. Terry enjoys spending time with his family, running, snowboarding and listening to music. In the future, he hopes to complete a marathon and finish his enlistment in the Navy.

Yeoman 3rd Class (AW) Patrick R. Wickham

YN3 Patrick Wickham from Boise, Idaho, joined the Navy two and a half years ago to change his life and see the world. In his spare time, Wickham enjoys working out, watching and playing hockey and hanging out with friends. He plans to make E-5 and make it back to Ireland in the future.

Big E Entertainment


Pri-Fly Sailors on Lookout Atop Enterprise