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    Army Engineers and NGA Support JCS’ Arrival



    Story by Petty Officer 3rd Class Jacob L Greenberg 

    USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74)

    Waters surrounding Naval Station (NS) Mayport, Florida, were dredged prior to the arrival of the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74), May 13.

    Employees from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and harbor pilots assigned to NS Mayport worked to dredge the waters and provide the survey data to the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) Maritime Safety Office for the update of navigation products to allow the John C. Stennis to transit safely.

    “The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers currently dredges the entrance channel, the turning basin, berths, destroyer slips and the small boat basin at NS Mayport every two years to various depths,” said Beau Corbett, the USACE’s project manager of the Jacksonville, Florida, district. “The dredging event [prior to the John C. Stennis’ arrival] commenced on January 21 and concluded on May 11, 110 calendar days. Our contractor dredged 1,693,000 cubic yards of material for a cost of about $11 million.”

    USACE was not the only entity that assisted in the John C. Stennis’ safe arrival.

    The NGA Maritime Safety Office incorporated survey data from the USACE to update the Digital Nautical Chart (DNC) used by the bridge navigation team so the John C. Stennis could transit into NS Mayport.

    “The incorporation of the USACE survey [into a dredging plan] did not coincide with our regular cartographic production cycle and was a [priority] to support the aircraft carrier’s transit into NS Mayport,” said Jonathan Stack, a NGA public affairs officer.

    Updated DNCs were produced on short notice prior to the John C. Stennis’ arrival at NS Mayport.

    “The USACE channel, basin, and pier-side dredging project survey data cutoff was April 25 and was provided to NGA on May 3. NGA was able to update and provide the DNC to the John C. Stennis’ Navigator on May 8, which enabled the John C. Stennis’ [NS] Mayport port visit,” said Troy Tworek, Fleet Navigator for U.S. Fleet Forces Command. “Following the normal process, an updated DNC that depicted the newly-dredged channel and pier-side depths would not have been available for fleet use until roughly two months after delivery of the survey data. In this case, NGA bypassed the normal production update cycle and made the creation of this DNC a high-priority, emergent project requirement, an “out-of-cycle” update so to speak. NGA created the updated DNC for the John C. Stennis to use within one week of the new survey data being provided by USACE.”

    The dredging project demonstrates of the interoperability of federal agencies to coordinate for a common goal.

    "Operationally, without the dredging work we would not have had the charts to legally enter," said Lt. Nicholas Elliott, assistant navigator for the John C. Stennis. "We rely on the NGA products to determine safety of navigation and the channel was annotating depths that were below our acceptable limits. Once NGA had the new soundings, a special update solely for the John C. Stennis was released outside of the normal update rotation, allowing us to meet our deadlines and make it in safely. The entire event displayed excellent coordination and support from all teams involved and directly contributed to over 1200 tigers having an excellent cruise."

    Sailors enjoyed a liberty call in the area surrounding NS Mayport while friends and family members embarked the ship for a Tiger Cruise at the end of their deployment.

    The John C. Stennis completed a homeport change while pulling into NS Norfolk and will begin preparations for a mid-life Refueling and Complex Overhaul at Newport News Shipbuilding, Huntington Ingalls Industries.

    For more news on John C. Stennis, visit www.stennis.navy.mil or follow along on Facebook at www.facebook.com/stennis74.



    Date Taken: 05.13.2019
    Date Posted: 05.23.2019 09:58
    Story ID: 323634
    Location: MAYPORT, FL, US 

    Web Views: 71
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    Army Engineers and NGA Support JCS’ Arrival