Category: Global

Eyes in the sky: one air station’s Herculean efforts to stop drug smugglers

A Coast Guard HC-130 Hercules airplane crew from Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C., conducts pre-flight checks before departing the air station, Jan. 8, 2019. The crew embarked on a training flight during which mission system operators practiced using the airplane's camera, radar and other sensory equipment. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Corinne Zilnicki.

A Panga boat suspected of smuggling led a Coast Guard HC-130 Hercules aircrew and a cutter boat crew on a wild chase int he middle of the Caribbean Sea last October. With the Hercules aircrew serving as their eyes in the sky, the crew of Coast Guard Cutter Donald Horsley seized 600 kilograms of cocain that night. The crews of voluntarily deploy to Central America each year in support of Joint Interagency Task Force South find a sense of pride and departure from their normal routine.

Coast Guard icebreaker crew completes second 2018 Arctic mission

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Healy (WAGB-20) in the ice, Oct. 3, 2018, about 715 miles north of Barrow, Alaska, in the Arctic. The Healy is in the Arctic with a team of about 30 scientists and engineers aboard deploying sensors and autonomous submarines to study stratified ocean dynamics and how environmental factors affect the water below the ice surface for the Office of Naval Research. The Healy, which is homeported in Seattle, is one of two ice breakers in U.S. service and is the only military ship dedicated to conducting research in the Arctic. U.S. Coast Guard photo by NyxoLyno Cangemi.

The crew of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Healy completed their second mission of their Arctic West Summer 2018 deployment Thursday, Oct. 18. Mission 1802 was a scientific mission to study stratified ocean dynamics in the Arctic (SODA) for the Office of Naval Research. Healy is one of two icebreakers in U.S. service that serves American interests in the region helping us better understand, plan and prepare for increased human activity.

How the Coast Guard supports maritime commerce and the ship-building industry

Lt. j.g. Ryan Thomas, a marine Inspector at Coast Guard Sector Delaware Bay, walks below the Kaimana Hila, an 850-foot container ship being constructed in Philadelphia Shipyards, Oct. 4, 2018. The Kaimana Hila and the Daniel K. Inouye are the two largest container ship ever built in the United States. During ship construction the Coast Guard works with the ship builder, shipping company and registrar in a unified effort to make the ship as safe as possible for operation. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Seth Johnson.

The U.S. Coast Guard works with the ship-building industry to evaluate safety and security of ships as well as ensure safety of life at sea for workers and those of the port and waterways of the U.S. With the increasing demand on maritime trade, the Coast Guard has published the Maritime Commerce Strategic Outlook that establishes three lines of effort. Check out the blog to learn more.

Communication and connectivity following Mangkhut: A Rescue 21 story

Members of Electronic Support Detachment Guam repair a generator at the Mt. Alutom radio site on Guam following Typhoon Mangkhut, Sept. 15, 2018. The generator is a back up power system for the Rescue 21 radio site. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

Category 5 Typhoon Mangkhut recently impacted the islands of Guam and Rota, a commonwealth of the U.S. It plunged 80 percent of Guam into darkness and all of Rota, flooded areas and destroyed aids to navigation and damaged the Rescue 21 VHF and microwave radio sites in Guam and Rota. The U.S. Coast Guard sent supplies and crews to Rota to provide aid to the community and repair and restore power to the radio sites that are used to listen for distress calls throughout the Mariana Islands. Read here to learn more about the Rescue 21 system and how this 21st century technology assists these small Pacific islands.

Former Coast Guard Cutter Sherman transferred to Sri Lankan Navy

After more than 50 years of service to the United States, the U.S. Coast Guard transferred the recently decommissioned Coast Guard Cutter Sherman to the Sri Lankan Navy. The transfer of the Sherman to Sri Lanka supports the Coast Guard’s efforts to strengthen the United States’ relationship with partner nations in the western Pacific, enhancing their maritime capabilities and governance, and supporting stability and the security of global maritime commons.

Research, Development, Test and Evaluation Spotlight: Arctic Technology Evaluation 2018

During Arctic Technology Evaluation 2018, the AeroVironment Puma unmanned aircraft system and a Coast Guard unmanned surface vessel were deployed together to test the feasibility of using multiple unmanned systems as a communications link over larger areas. Patrick Ryan, a researcher in the Systems Branch at the Coast Guard Research and Development Center, readies the UAS before launch. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Alexandra Swan.

The Coast Guard’s objectives in the Arctic include advancing U.S. security interests and pursuing responsible stewardship of the area. Two components of that strategy – maritime domain awareness and protection of the delicate environment – were the focus of the Coast Guard Research, Development, Test and Evaluation Program’s 2018 Arctic Technology Evaluation held in late July in Alaska. The event enables the Coast Guard to gain efficiencies by evaluating multiple technologies that have the potential to enhance future Coast Guard operations in harsh environments.

The Long Blue Line: Coast Guard small boat ops in Vietnam

Small boat showing the minimal protection for boat and crew of flak vests and battle helmets. Photo courtesy of Gordon M. Gillies.

During the Vietnam War, the 82-foot “Point”-Class cutters of Squadron One supported small boat reconnaissance missions. Their missions required the small boats to probe the canals and waterways of South Vietnam. These missions gathered intelligence regarding enemy weapons, troop movements, fortified positions and bunkers. Check out the blog to learn more about these dangerous operations, carried out at night and giving new meaning to the service’s old saying, “You have to go out, but you don’t have to come back.”