Ken777
Topic Author
Posts: 9102
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 5:39 am

Enterprise Ends 51-Year Career At Sea

Wed Nov 07, 2012 4:53 am

Sad news story for me today:

Quote:

The aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN 65) returned to homeport at Naval Station Norfolk, Va., for the last time Sunday under its own power, ending a storied era of service at sea in all the nation’s wars and conflicts since the Cuban Missile Crisis 50 years ago.

The full story is at:

http://www.military.com/daily-news/2...ar-career-at-sea.html?ESRC=navy.nl

The Enterprise was joined with two other nuclear powered surface warships in what was called Nuclear Task Force One. I served on the Long Beach - the middle ship in this picture:



While there was a lot of promise at the time for nuclear surface warships it simply didn't make it outside of the carriers. The benefit I saw on the Long Beach was focused on the ability to leave port and go full speed 24/7 to a hot spot. The main liability was the TALOS system, which was a ram jet missile. The last time I saw the LONG Beach was in Perth. The TALOS system had been taken out and the space was converted to a gym.

So a sad farewell for all who served on her, or with her.
 
Flighty
Posts: 7871
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 3:07 am

RE: Enterprise Ends 51-Year Career At Sea

Wed Nov 07, 2012 6:29 pm

Amazing career for a US icon!

Not only is "she" an impressive machine, when you think how many years she operated, it just proves what amazing strength the USA has had. Utterly mind boggling.
 
MadameConcorde
Posts: 9222
Joined: Fri Feb 23, 2007 5:08 pm

RE: Enterprise Ends 51-Year Career At Sea

Wed Nov 07, 2012 7:27 pm

I knew she was at the end of her brilliant career after this last deployment in the Persian Gulf.

What is to become of the carrier?

Is she going to be scrubbed or is she going to be used for some other purpose or will she become a Museum piece like the Intrepid in Manhattan?

    
There was a better way to fly it was called Concorde
 
User avatar
Tugger
Posts: 6147
Joined: Tue Apr 18, 2006 8:38 am

RE: Enterprise Ends 51-Year Career At Sea

Wed Nov 07, 2012 7:32 pm

I just hope that we can bring her name back into service again on a future ship of her stature. We have lost too many great ship names to politics.

Congratulations to the Enterprise and her crews for the many fine years of service!

Tugg
I don’t know that I am unafraid to be myself, but it is hard to be somebody else. -W. Shatner
 
User avatar
DarkSnowyNight
Posts: 1816
Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2012 7:59 pm

RE: Enterprise Ends 51-Year Career At Sea

Wed Nov 07, 2012 8:11 pm

Quoting tugger (Reply 3):

I just hope that we can bring her name back into service again on a future ship of her stature.

I would guess that that's a certainty.
Be A Perfectionst, You're Nothing If You're Just Another; Something Material, This Isn't Personal...
 
User avatar
Aesma
Posts: 7952
Joined: Sat Nov 14, 2009 6:14 am

RE: Enterprise Ends 51-Year Career At Sea

Wed Nov 07, 2012 8:53 pm

Quoting tugger (Reply 3):
I just hope that we can bring her name back into service again on a future ship of her stature. We have lost too many great ship names to politics.

Don't worry !

New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
 
connies4ever
Posts: 3393
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2006 10:54 pm

RE: Enterprise Ends 51-Year Career At Sea

Wed Nov 07, 2012 9:02 pm

Perhaps someone looking at this thread can educate me, but I am under the impression that "Big E" was:

- stock Forrestal class hull;
- 8 small submarine reactors (unlike Nimitz et al, who have 2 larger, more efficient reactors);
- as a proof of concept vessel, tended to be maintenance heavy

Whatever my level of knowledge about Enterprise, that it lasted 50 years is a tribute to the basic design and there is no doubt it has become an American icon.
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
 
User avatar
Francoflier
Posts: 3786
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2001 12:27 pm

RE: Enterprise Ends 51-Year Career At Sea

Wed Nov 07, 2012 9:57 pm

Unfortunately, despite the significance of this one-off proof of concept of a ship, which still performed operationally for over 50 years, I doubt we'll see it turned into a museum, as much as I'd love to see it happen.

Nuclear vessels don't make for good museum platforms. Defueling and securing them entails gutting them out almost completely. The cost of rebuilding it afterwards would destroy any chance of seeing her become a profitable tourist attraction, unless through heavy government subsidies. It's hard enough for a conventional carrier...

Shame. I'd love to have a chance to get on board for a visit.
I'll do my own airline. With Blackjack. And hookers. In fact, forget the airline.
 
User avatar
par13del
Posts: 6720
Joined: Sun Dec 18, 2005 9:14 pm

RE: Enterprise Ends 51-Year Career At Sea

Wed Nov 07, 2012 11:21 pm

What I do not understand is why shut down the reactors in Norfolk, then have the ship towed to the west cost for ultimate break up, even if it meant shortning the last cruise due to "time on the reactor", are there no defueling facilities on the west coast?

The first time I knew of the Enterprize (this version) was a National Geographic magazine I was reading in an office - an old copy - where on her shakedown cruise off Cuba they had an arieal shot of her making a tight circle, she did that fast enough that the wake fully outlined the circle.

The US Navy needs an Enterprize, lets hope a replacement is among the new Ford Class.
 
User avatar
Tugger
Posts: 6147
Joined: Tue Apr 18, 2006 8:38 am

RE: Enterprise Ends 51-Year Career At Sea

Wed Nov 07, 2012 11:24 pm

Quoting par13del (Reply 8):
What I do not understand is why shut down the reactors in Norfolk, then have the ship towed to the west cost for ultimate break up, even if it meant shortning the last cruise due to "time on the reactor", are there no defueling facilities on the west coast?

Because the required facilities to cut a ship the scale of Enterprise open and remove the reactors safely is not inp lace on the west coast. The nuclear navy is built on the east coast and they have the ability to handle such things.

Tugg
I don’t know that I am unafraid to be myself, but it is hard to be somebody else. -W. Shatner
 
Ken777
Topic Author
Posts: 9102
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 5:39 am

RE: Enterprise Ends 51-Year Career At Sea

Thu Nov 08, 2012 3:18 am

Quoting par13del (Reply 8):
The first time I knew of the Enterprize (this version) was a National Geographic magazine I was reading in an office - an old copy - where on her shakedown cruise off Cuba they had an arieal shot of her making a tight circle, she did that fast enough that the wake fully outlined the circle.

These ships were fast. The LONG BEACH never lost in any of the Tonkin Gulf Drag Races she was in during her first two deployments there. (Those were the ones I was on.)
 
BladeLWS
Posts: 358
Joined: Wed Dec 14, 2005 12:41 pm

RE: Enterprise Ends 51-Year Career At Sea

Thu Nov 08, 2012 4:51 am

Quoting par13del (Reply 8):
What I do not understand is why shut down the reactors in Norfolk, then have the ship towed to the west cost for ultimate break up, even if it meant shortning the last cruise due to "time on the reactor", are there no defueling facilities on the west coast?

The only facility in the US for refueling/defueling carrier reactors in Newport News Shipyard in Norfolk. Since she tied up to the pier they've already started the process of cooling down and taking them out of critical power. Once the decom is done in Norfolk she'll be stripped of anything useful for the fleet and/or memorabilia removed to go to other units or into naval historical command storage. Ex-Enterprise will then be towed up river to NPNS where she will be defueled. I do not believe they will cut into her flight deck at this stage since refueling operations have not needed it before. Once she's been defueled, aviation and lube oil tanks spotless, and everything except for the kitchen sink removed for the fleet she'll be towed the long way around to Brementon. There PSNS has the expertise to breakup nuclear powered vessels.

From there it's pretty much straight forward where they will cut down from the flight deck to the reactor compartments, also through the sides of the hull in various spots. Reactor vessels and piping part of the reactor will be removed, sterilized, and sent for storage up river next to old submarine and cruiser reactors. Once that's done everything that is related to the nuclear part of the ship is removed she'll be sold to the lowest bidder for scrapping.

It's sad that such a fine ship has to end this way but there is no possibility for museum status due to it's cost of upkeep, and that the process to remove the reactors and piping destroys the interior of the ship. I had high hopes that objects such as the island and what not would be kept for a semi-museum but it seems that will not happen. The best we'll get is some anchor and prop lawn displays...

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: GrahamHill, luckyone and 9 guests

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos