The latest Freedom class LCS, USS Cooperstown (LCS 23) stopped in Halifax yesterday for about 8 hours. the ship arrived in the morning and sailed from the dockyard at 4:30.
The freedom class LCS program has been beset by a number of issues, including problems with the combining gear that connect the diesel engines and the turbines to the shafts, given the location of that combining gear, the navy has mothballed many of the early ships of the class, as the repair is too costly.
The USS Gerald R. Ford offered a media availability yesterday, which i had the privilege to attend. All manner of tour boats, and a Halifax transit ferry were pressed into service to move people form the carrier to shore and back, including tour vessels from Oak Island and Lunenburg – sort of a mini Dunkirk.
The carrier is designed for stern boarding, and a barge was used as a floating dock. from there, its up two flights to the hanger deck.
Those doors lead to the hanger deck.
The flight deck is several flights of stairs up from the hanger deck.
(below) the view form vultures alley, the lowest balcony on the tower.
Most of the Air wing looked to be on deck, and was made up up of F-18 hornets. This one had a kill; a SU-22 in 2017.
(above) E-2 Hawkeye (below) SH-60 seahawk (which is the naval variant of a blackhawk)
As Part of the Media availability, various officials spoke of the the importance of the deployment, both to test the Ford, but also to hone interoperability between navies, and show that nato can work together as a unified force.
The Ford has on board a liaison officer from each of the participating navies. (Denmark, Netherlands, Germany and Spain. These officers also spoke to the importance of the work
(Above)Tanhauser had a tight departure from Autoport Friday afternoon, working her way around the USS Gerald R. Ford. (Below) Gotland, delivering a load of mud to pier 27. Gotland is working on Nirint’s service to Cuba and Norther Europe.
word has been floating around of something big and interesting appearing in the harbour this month. I suspected it might be the USS Gerald R. Ford – The US Navy’s newest carrier on her maiden deployment.
The ship had been exercising with nato partners, including HMCS Fredericton. Seawaves have listed a Port visit by a German frigate FGS Hessen, which was also exercising with the Carrier group in October, and also reported a 2022 visit by the Ford to Halifax, with no date.
NSBuzz is now reporting the ship is due on Friday.
4 AIS targets “Patrol Craft 1 (ca)”, “Patrol Craft 2 (ca)”, “Patrol Craft 3 (ca)”, and “Patrol Craft 4 (ca)” have been working in the Anchorage 1 area today. The CA designation likely identifies them as RCN to foreign naval vessels.
UPDATE: two C-2 Aircraft arrived in YHZ this afternoon from Virginia. the aircraft are carrier capable, and likely will be bringing dignitaries to the ship, based on activities before the Eisenhowers arrival.
UPDATE: USS Gerald R Ford Pilot order is for 0800 tomorrow. Also Arriving are: USS NORMANDY 10am HNLMS DE ZEVEN PROVINCIEN 10:30 FGS HESSEN 11:00 USS RAMAGE 11:30 HNLMS VAN AMSTEL 12:00 HDMS PETER WILLEMOES 12:30 ALVARO DE BAZAN 13:00 Note all times are for the Pilot Station. they should appear in the inner harbour 30-45 minutes later.
Polar circle is an Ice breaking tug. the ship was previously under contract to a Russian Oil and Gas Company, but with sanctions due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the owners cancelled the charter.
The Polar Circle was built in 2006, and is registered in Cyprus.
The ship sailed through the Panama Canal, and was last in New York, sailing for Halifax September 21 to Halifax. Given the ship has no work, they took a leisurely sail, arriving Oct 7th. After spending a day alongside, the tug move to anchor in the basin, where it is presumably looking for employment.