Ship commissioning is the act or ceremony of placing a ship in active service, may be regarded as a particular application of the general concepts and practices of project commissioning. The term is most applied to the placing of a warship in active duty with its country's military forces; the ceremonies involved are rooted in centuries old naval tradition. Ship naming and launching endow a ship hull with her identity, but many milestones remain before she is completed and considered ready to be designated a commissioned ship; the engineering plant and electronic systems and multitudinous other equipment required to transform the new hull into an operating and habitable warship are installed and tested. The prospective commanding officer, ship's officers, the petty officers, seamen who will form the crew report for training and intensive familiarization with their new ship. Prior to commissioning, the new ship undergoes sea trials to identify any deficiencies needing correction; the preparation and readiness time between christening-launching and commissioning may be as much as three years for a nuclear powered aircraft carrier to as brief as twenty days for a World War II landing ship.
USS Monitor, of American Civil War fame, was commissioned less than three weeks after launch. Regardless of the type of ship in question, a vessel's journey towards commissioning in its nation's navy begins with a process known as sea trials. Sea trials take place some years after a vessel was laid down, mark the interim step between the completion of a ship's construction and its official acceptance for service with its nation's navy. Sea trials begin when the ship in question is floated out of its dry dock, at which time the initial crew for a ship will assume command of the vessel in question; the ship is sailed in littoral waters for the purpose of testing the design and other ship specific systems to ensure that they work properly and can handle the equipment that they will be using in the coming years. Tests done during this phase can include launching missiles from missile magazines, firing the ship's gun, conducting basic flight tests with rotary and fixed-wing aircraft that will be assigned to the ship in the future, various tests of the electronic and propulsion equipment.
During this phase of testing problems arise relating to the state of the equipment on the ship in question, which can result in the ship returning to the builder's shipyard to address the concerns in question. In addition to problems with a ship's arms and equipment, the sea trial phase a ship undergoes prior to commissioning can identify issues with the ship's design that may need to be addressed before it can be accepted into service with its nation's navy. During her sea trials in 1999 French Naval officials determined that the French aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle was too short to safely operate the E2C Hawkeye, resulting in her return to the builder's shipyard for enlargement. After a ship has cleared its sea trial period, it will be accepted into service with its nation's navy. At this point, the ship in question will undergo a process of degaussing and/or deperming, which will vastly reduce the ship in question's magnetic signature. Once a ship's sea trials are completed plans for the actual commissioning ceremony will take shape.
Depending on the naval traditions of the nation in question, the commissioning ceremony may be an elaborately planned event with guests, the ship's future crew, other persons of interest in attendance, or the nation in question may forgo a ceremony and instead administratively place the ship in commission. At a minimum, on the day on which the ship in question is to be commissioned the crew will report for duty aboard the ship and the commanding officer will read through the orders given for the ship and its personnel. If the ship's ceremony is a public affair the Captain may make a speech to the audience, along with other VIPs as the ceremony dictates. Religious ceremonies, such as blessing the ship or the singing of traditional hymns or songs, may occur. Once a ship has been commissioned its final step toward becoming an active unit of the navy it now serves is to report to its home port and load or accept any remaining equipment. To decommission a ship is to terminate its career in service in the armed forces of a nation.
Unlike wartime ship losses, in which a vessel lost to enemy action is said to be struck, decommissioning confers that the ship has reached the end of its usable life and is being retired from a given country's navy. Depending on the naval traditions of the country in question, a ceremony commemorating the decommissioning of the ship in question may take place, or the vessel may be removed administratively with little to no fanfare; the term "paid off" is alternatively used in British Commonwealth contexts, originating in the age-of-sail practice of ending an officer's commission and paying crew wages once the ship completed its voyage. Ship decommissioning occurs some years after the ship was commissioned and is intended to serve as a means by which a vessel that has become too old or too obsolete can be retired with honor from the operating country's armed force. Decommissioning of the vessel may occur due to treaty agreements or for safety reasons (such as a ship's nuclear reactor and assoc
The lead ship, name ship, or class leader is the first of a series or class of ships all constructed according to the same general design. The term is applicable to larger civilian craft. Large ships may take as much as five to ten years to construct. Any changes or advances that are available when building a ship are to be included, so it is rare to have two that are identical. Constructing one ship is likely to reveal better ways of doing things and errors; the second and ships are started before the first one is completed and tested. Building copies is still more efficient and cost-effective than building prototypes, the lead ship will be followed by copies with some improvements rather than radically different versions; the improvements will sometimes be retrofitted to the lead ship. The lead ship will be launched and commissioned for shakedown testing before following ships are completed, making the lead ship a combination of template and prototype, rather than expending resources on a prototype that will never see actual use.
Ship classes are named in one of two ways. If a ship class is produced for another fleet, the first active unit will become the lead ship for that fleet. Larger civilian craft, such as Sun Princess, the lead ship of the Sun-class cruise ships, sometimes follow this convention as well. Example of a lead ship announcement from US Navy USS Pennsylvania BB-38
USS Ticonderoga (CG-47)
USS Ticonderoga was a guided-missile cruiser of the United States Navy. Homeported in Pascagoula, the "Tico" was the lead ship of her class. Ticonderoga was the first combatant ship to feature the Aegis combat system; this allows the ship to track and engage multiple targets much more than any ship previously. CG-47 is the fifth United States Navy vessel to carry on the name Ticonderoga; the ship was the fifth ship named for the Capture of Fort Ticonderoga in 1775. She was named after the Essex-class aircraft carrier Ticonderoga, nearly sunk during World War II. Most of the ships in the Ticonderoga class are named for significant battles in U. S. history. The name "Ticonderoga" comes from an Iroquois word tekontaró:ken, meaning "it is at the junction of two waterways"; the United States Navy built the first Aegis cruisers using the hull and machinery designs of Spruance-class destroyers. Ticonderoga was ordered as a guided missile destroyer, but redesignated as a cruiser before she was laid down.
The contract to build DDG-47 Ticonderoga was awarded to Ingalls Shipbuilding on 22 September 1978. On 1 January 1980, she was redesignated as a guided missile cruiser, CG-47, her keel was laid down on 21 January 1980, the 35th anniversary of the devastating kamikaze attack on the Essex-class aircraft carrier Ticonderoga. CG-47 was launched on 25 April 1981 and was delivered on 13 December 1982, she was commissioned on 22 January 1983 with First Lady Nancy Reagan, the ship's main sponsor, having the honor of christening the ship on 16 May 1981. The first Captain of the ship was Roland George Guilbault who became an Admiral. In the late 1980s, she served in the Persian Gulf as part of Operation Earnest Will while under the command of Captain James M. Arrison III, USN. For a time in the late 1990s, she was based at Pascagoula, Mississippi, as part of Commander, Naval Surface Forces Atlantic's Westerns Hemisphere Group. On 4 May 2004, she completed transit of the Panama Canal and moved to cross the equator.
Her ship crew engaged in the rites and rituals of the crossing, inducting the Captain of the ship as well as many of the crew in to'Shell-Backs'. She completed her final deployment on 3 August 2004, was decommissioned on 30 September of that year. After her decommissioning, she was towed to the Naval Inactive Ship Maintenance Facility in Philadelphia. In 2010 she was offered for museum donation by the Navy. There was an effort to bring Ticonderoga to Pascagoula, where she was built, to serve as a museum ship. In May 2013, the vessel was formally stricken for disposal. In October of the same year, The Ticonderoga Historical Society reported that the US Navy was going to scrap the ship after a number of potential museum sites were unable to add her to their collections. In June 2014, NAVSEA released a disposal reporting letter declaring the ex-Ticonderoga to be available for inspection by bidders and ready for disposal by scrapping or sinking; as of September 2016, the ship remained in Philadelphia.
1x Joint Meritorious Unit Award 2x Navy Unit Commendations 5x Meritorious Unit Commendations 3x Battle Efficiency Ribbons 1x Navy Expeditionary Medal 2x National Defense Service Medal 4x Armed Forces Expeditionary Medals 1x Southwest Asia Service Medal 2x Armed Forces Service Medals 2x Coast Guard Special Operations Service Ribbons Sea Service Deployment Ribbon 2x Secretary of the Navy Letters of Commendation 1x Chief of Naval Operations Letter of Commendation Ticonderoga was featured in the 1986 Tom Clancy novel Red Storm Rising, defending the Nimitz and Saratoga battlegroups against the saturation anti-ship missile attack in the Norwegian Sea by Soviet bombers. This article includes information collected from the Naval Vessel Register, which, as a U. S. government publication, is in the public domain. The entry can be found here. Navsource.org - Ticonderoga Navysite.de - Ticonderoga Byington, Stacey. "USS Ticonderoga Decommissioned". Navy News Service. Retrieved 2014-08-17
USS Ticonderoga (1918)
The third USS Ticonderoga was a steamship in the United States Navy which served as a cargo ship. She was built as Camilla Rickmers, a steamer, in 1914 by Rickmers Aktien Gesellschaft, at Bremerhaven and operated by Rickmers Reederei & Schiffbau Aktien Gesellschaft, she was seized by United States Customs officials in 1917. James J. Madison, USNRF, in command. Ticonderoga departed Boston on 16 January and reached Newport News, three days later. There, she loaded a cargo of automobiles, trucks and sundry other Army supplies before moving north to New York City to join a convoy which sailed for France on 20 February. Ticonderoga began discharging her cargo, she departed France on the 23rd to return to the United States. She arrived at New York on 8 April and the following day headed for Norfolk, Virginia, to undergo repairs and take on cargo before returning to New York on the 30th. On 3 May, Ticonderoga steamed out of New York harbor once more, bound for Europe, she reached Brest on 18 May and proceeded southeast along the coast of France to the Gironde estuary where she unloaded her cargo and took on ballast for the return voyage.
The transport entered Hampton Roads 15 days later. Ticonderoga took on another Army shipment at Newport News and joined an east-bound convoy at New York on 12 July, she delivered her cargo at the Gironde estuary once more, laying over there from 28 July to 21 August before heading home. Ticonderoga loaded another Army cargo at Norfolk between 19 September, she steamed to New York where she joined a convoy bound for Europe. On 22 September, Ticonderoga cleared New York for the last time. During the night of the 29th and 30th, the transport developed engine trouble and dropped behind the convoy. At 05:20 the following morning, she sighted the German submarine U-152 running on the surface. For the next two hours, her gun crews fought the enemy in a losing battle; the U-boat's gunners put her forward gun out of commission after six shots, but the 6-inch gun aft continued the uneven battle. Every man on board Ticonderoga, including her captain, suffered wounds; the submarine's two 5.9-inch guns succeeded in silencing Ticonderoga's remaining gun.
At 07:45, Ticonderoga slipped beneath the sea. Of the 237 sailors and soldiers embarked, only 24 survived. Twenty-two of those survivors were in one lifeboat and were picked up by the British steamer SS Moorish Prince four days later; the other two, the executive officer and the first assistant engineer, were taken prisoner on board the U-boat and landed at Kiel, when U-152 completed her cruise. Ticonderoga ′ s name. Lieutenant Commander James Jonas Madison received the Medal of Honor for his actions on Ticonderoga; this article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. The entry can be found here
Essex-class aircraft carrier
The Essex class was a class of aircraft carriers of the United States Navy that constituted the 20th century's most numerous class of capital ships. The class consisted of 24 vessels, which came in "long-hull" versions. Thirty-two ships were ordered, but as World War II wound down, six were canceled before construction, two were canceled after construction had begun. No Essex-class ships were lost to enemy action, despite several vessels sustaining heavy damage; the Essex-class carriers were the backbone of the U. S. Navy's combat strength during World War II from mid-1943 on, along with the addition of the three Midway-class carriers just after the war, continued to be the heart of U. S. naval strength until the supercarriers began to come into the fleet in numbers during the 1960s and 1970s. The preceding Yorktown-class aircraft carriers and the designers' list of trade-offs and limitations forced by arms control treaty obligations shaped the formative basis from which the Essex class was developed — a design formulation sparked into being when the Japanese and Italians repudiated the limitations proposed in the 1936 revision of the Washington Naval Treaty of 1922 — in effect providing a free pass for all five signatories to resume the interrupted naval arms race of the 1920s in early 1937.
At the time of the repudiations, both Italy and Japan had colonial ambitions, intending on or conducting military conquests. With the demise of the treaty limitations and the growing tensions in Europe, naval planners were free to apply both the lessons they had learned operating carriers for fifteen years and those of operating the Yorktown-class carriers to the newer design. Designed to carry a larger air group, unencumbered by the latest in a succession of pre-war naval treaty limits, Essex was over sixty feet longer, nearly ten feet wider in beam, more than a third heavier. A longer, wider flight deck and a deck-edge elevator facilitated more efficient aviation operations, enhancing the ship's offensive and defensive air power. Machinery arrangement and armor protection were improved from previous designs; these features, plus the provision of more anti-aircraft guns, gave the ships much enhanced survivability. In fact, during the war, none of the Essex-class carriers were lost and two, USS Franklin and USS Bunker Hill, came home under their own power and were repaired after receiving heavy damage.
Some ships in the class would serve until well after the end of the Vietnam War, when the class was retired and replaced by newer classes. Debates raged regarding the effect of strength deck location. British designers' comments tended to disparage the use of hangar deck armor, but some historians, such as D. K. Brown in Nelson to Vanguard, see the American arrangement to have been superior. In the late 1930s, locating the strength deck at hangar deck level in the proposed Essex-class ships reduced the weight located high in the ship, resulting in smaller supporting structures and more aircraft capacity for the desired displacement. Subsequently, the larger size of the first supercarriers necessitated a deeper hull and shifted the center of gravity and center of stability lower, enabling moving the strength deck to the flight deck, thus freeing US Naval design architects to move the armor higher and remain within compliance of US Navy stability specifications without imperiling seaworthiness.
One of the design studies prepared for the Essex project, "Design 9G", included an armored flight deck but reduced aircraft capacity, displaced 27,200 tons, or about 1,200 tons more than "Design 9F", which formed the basis of the actual Essex design. After the abrogation of disarmament treaties by Japan in 1936, the U. S. took a realistic look at its naval strength. With the Naval Expansion Act of Congress passed on 17 May 1938, an increase of 40,000 tons in aircraft carriers was authorized; this permitted the building of Hornet, the third Yorktown-class carrier, Essex, the lead ship of a new class. CV-9 was to be the prototype of the 27,000-ton aircraft carrier larger than Enterprise, yet smaller than Saratoga; the Navy ordered the first three of the new design, CV-9, CV-10 and CV-11, from Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock on 3 July 1940. These were to become known as Essex-class carriers. Under the terms of the Two-Ocean Navy Act, ten more of these carriers were programmed. Eight were ordered on 9 September, CV-12 through CV−15 from Newport News, CV-16 through −19 from Bethlehem Steel's Fore River Shipyard.
After the US declaration of war, Congress appropriated funds for nineteen more Essexes. Ten were ordered in August 1942 and three more in June 1943. Only two of these were completed in time to see active World War II service. Six ships ordered in 1944 were canceled; the Essex-class carriers combined the policy of naming aircraft carriers after historic battles begun with the Lexington class with the policy of naming them for historic navy ships followed for the Yorktown class. The first eight hulls were assigned names from historic Navy ships (Essex, Bon Homme Richard, Kearsarge, Hanc
World War I
World War I known as the First World War or the Great War, was a global war originating in Europe that lasted from 28 July 1914 to 11 November 1918. Contemporaneously described as "the war to end all wars", it led to the mobilisation of more than 70 million military personnel, including 60 million Europeans, making it one of the largest wars in history, it is one of the deadliest conflicts in history, with an estimated nine million combatants and seven million civilian deaths as a direct result of the war, while resulting genocides and the 1918 influenza pandemic caused another 50 to 100 million deaths worldwide. On 28 June 1914, Gavrilo Princip, a Bosnian Serb Yugoslav nationalist, assassinated the Austro-Hungarian heir Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo, leading to the July Crisis. In response, on 23 July Austria-Hungary issued an ultimatum to Serbia. Serbia's reply failed to satisfy the Austrians, the two moved to a war footing. A network of interlocking alliances enlarged the crisis from a bilateral issue in the Balkans to one involving most of Europe.
By July 1914, the great powers of Europe were divided into two coalitions: the Triple Entente—consisting of France and Britain—and the Triple Alliance of Germany, Austria-Hungary and Italy. Russia felt it necessary to back Serbia and, after Austria-Hungary shelled the Serbian capital of Belgrade on the 28th, partial mobilisation was approved. General Russian mobilisation was announced on the evening of 30 July; when Russia failed to comply, Germany declared war on 1 August in support of Austria-Hungary, with Austria-Hungary following suit on 6th. German strategy for a war on two fronts against France and Russia was to concentrate the bulk of its army in the West to defeat France within four weeks shift forces to the East before Russia could mobilise. On 2 August, Germany demanded free passage through Belgium, an essential element in achieving a quick victory over France; when this was refused, German forces invaded Belgium on 3 August and declared war on France the same day. On 12 August and France declared war on Austria-Hungary.
In November 1914, the Ottoman Empire entered the war on the side of the Alliance, opening fronts in the Caucasus and the Sinai Peninsula. The war was fought in and drew upon each power's colonial empire as well, spreading the conflict to Africa and across the globe; the Entente and its allies would become known as the Allied Powers, while the grouping of Austria-Hungary and their allies would become known as the Central Powers. The German advance into France was halted at the Battle of the Marne and by the end of 1914, the Western Front settled into a battle of attrition, marked by a long series of trench lines that changed little until 1917. In 1915, Italy opened a front in the Alps. Bulgaria joined the Central Powers in 1915 and Greece joined the Allies in 1917, expanding the war in the Balkans; the United States remained neutral, although by doing nothing to prevent the Allies from procuring American supplies whilst the Allied blockade prevented the Germans from doing the same the U. S. became an important supplier of war material to the Allies.
After the sinking of American merchant ships by German submarines, the revelation that the Germans were trying to incite Mexico to make war on the United States, the U. S. declared war on Germany on 6 April 1917. Trained American forces would not begin arriving at the front in large numbers until mid-1918, but the American Expeditionary Force would reach some two million troops. Though Serbia was defeated in 1915, Romania joined the Allied Powers in 1916 only to be defeated in 1917, none of the great powers were knocked out of the war until 1918; the 1917 February Revolution in Russia replaced the Tsarist autocracy with the Provisional Government, but continuing discontent at the cost of the war led to the October Revolution, the creation of the Soviet Socialist Republic, the signing of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk by the new government in March 1918, ending Russia's involvement in the war. This allowed the transfer of large numbers of German troops from the East to the Western Front, resulting in the German March 1918 Offensive.
This offensive was successful, but the Allies rallied and drove the Germans back in their Hundred Days Offensive. Bulgaria was the first Central Power to sign an armistice—the Armistice of Salonica on 29 September 1918. On 30 October, the Ottoman Empire capitulated. On 4 November, the Austro-Hungarian empire agreed to the Armistice of Villa Giusti after being decisively defeated by Italy in the Battle of Vittorio Veneto. With its allies defeated, revolution at home, the military no longer willing to fight, Kaiser Wilhelm abdicated on 9 November and Germany signed an armistice on 11 November 1918. World War I was a significant turning point in the political, cultural and social climate of the world; the war and its immediate aftermath sparked numerous uprisings. The Big Four (Britain, the United States, It
In the 18th century and most of the 19th, a sloop-of-war in the Royal Navy was a warship with a single gun deck that carried up to eighteen guns. The rating system covered all vessels above. In technical terms the more specialised bomb vessels and fireships were classed as sloops-of-war, in practice these were employed in the sloop role when not carrying out their specialized functions. In World War I and World War II, the Royal Navy reused the term "sloop" for specialized convoy-defence vessels, including the Flower class of World War I and the successful Black Swan class of World War II, with anti-aircraft and anti-submarine capability. A sloop-of-war was quite different from a civilian or mercantile sloop, a general term for a single-masted vessel rigged in a way that would today be called a gaff cutter, though some sloops of that type did serve in the 18th century British Royal Navy on the Great Lakes of North America. In the first half of the 18th century, most naval sloops were two-masted vessels carrying a ketch or a snow rig.
A ketch had main and mizzen masts but no foremast, while a snow had a foremast, a main mast and a mizzen abaft the lower main mast. The first three-masted sloops appeared during the 1740s, from the mid-1750s most new sloops were built with a three-masted rig; the third sail the ability to back sail. In the 1770s, the two-masted sloop re-appeared in a new guise as the brig sloop, the successor to the former snow sloops. Brig sloops had two masts. In the Napoleonic period, Britain built huge numbers of brig sloops of the Cruizer class and the Cherokee class; the brig rig was economical of manpower and, when armed with carronades, they had the highest ratio of firepower to tonnage of any ships in the Royal Navy. The carronades used much less manpower than the long guns used to arm frigates; the Cruizer class were used as cheaper and more economical substitutes for frigates, in situations where the frigates' high cruising endurance was not essential. A carronade-armed brig, would be at the mercy of a frigate armed with long guns, so long as the frigate manoeuvered to exploit its superiority of range.
The other limitation of brig sloops as opposed to post ships and frigates was their restricted stowage for water and provisions, which made them less suitable for long-range cruising. However, their shallower draught made them excellent raiders against coastal shipping and shore installations; the Royal Navy made extensive use of the Bermuda sloop, both as a cruiser against French privateers and smugglers, as its standard advice vessels, carrying communications, vital persons and materials, performing reconnaissance duties for the fleets. Bermuda sloops were found with mixtures of gaff and square rig, or a Bermuda rig, they were built with up to three masts. The single masted ships, with their huge sails, the tremendous wind energy they harnessed, were demanding to sail, required large, experienced crews; the Royal Navy favoured multi-masted versions as it was perennially short of sailors, at the end of the 18th century, such personnel as it had in the Western Atlantic, received insufficient training.
The longer decks of the multi-masted vessels had the advantage of allowing more guns to be carried. A sloop-of-war was smaller than a sailing frigate and was outside the rating system. In general, a sloop-of-war would be under the command of a master and commander rather than a post captain, although in day-to-day use at sea the commanding officer of any naval vessels would be addressed as "captain". A ship sloop was the equivalent of the smaller corvette of the French Navy; the name corvette was subsequently applied to British vessels, but not until the 1830s. American usage, while similar to British terminology into the beginning of the 19th century diverged. By about 1825 the United States Navy used "sloop-of-war" to designate a flush-deck ship-rigged warship with all armament on the gundeck; the Americans occasionally used the French term corvette. In the Royal Navy, the sloop evolved into an unrated vessel with a single gun deck and three masts, two square rigged and the aftermost fore-and-aft rigged.
Steam sloops had a transverse division of their lateral coal bunkers in order that the lower division could be emptied first, to maintain a level of protection afforded by the coal in the upper bunker division along the waterline. During the War of 1812 sloops of war in the service of the United States Navy performed well against their Royal Navy equivalents; the American ships had the advantage of being ship