Global Nation Inquirer
USS Blue Ridge to arrive in Manila
By Jerry E. Esplanada
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 15:33:00 02/10/2011
MANILA, Philippines—The USS Blue Ridge, the flagship of the US 7th Fleet, is scheduled to arrive in Manila next Sunday for a "routine port call and four-day goodwill visit," according to the US Embassy in Manila.
Information on USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19)
USS BLUE RIDGE is the lead ship of the BLUE RIDGE class and the Seventh Fleet command ship. USS BLUE RIDGE is the third ship in the Navy named after the Blue Ridge Mountains in the eastern United States.
General Characteristics:Keel Laid: 1967
Commissioned: November 14, 1970
Builder: Philadelphia Naval Shipyard, Philadelphia, NJ.
Propulsion system: two boilers, one geared turbine
Length: 636,5 feet (194 meters)
Beam: 108 feet (32.9 meters)
Draft: 26,9 feet (8.8 meters)
Displacement: approx. 18,400 tons full load
Speed: 23 knots
Aircraft: all helicopters
Armament: two 20mm Phalanx CIWS, 50 cal machine guns, 25mm guns
Homeport: Yokosuka, Japan
Crew: 52 Officers, 790 Enlisted
The Mission of USS BLUE RIDGE:
Unlike its World War II predecessor of the same name, which had to be converted from a merchantman to an Amphibious Force flagship, the United States Ship BLUE RIDGE represents a unique effort and achievement in the Navy's Command and Control ship design.
Here for the first time is a platform built from the keel up to accomplish the mission of Command and Control coordination. In this 18,500 ton ship are found the facilities to direct and manage every phase of command and control operations. BLUE RIDGE represents the accumulated knowledge of four decades of the Navy's experience in meeting difficult challenges of Control and Coordination.
BLUE RIDGE utilizes its "main battery" of computers, communications equipment and other electronic facilities to fulfill her mission as flagship for the United States Seventh Fleet. These systems are also instrumental in its secondary function as a command ship for the Amphibious Task Force and Landing Force Commanders during all phases of fleetwide operations, as well as a Commander Joint Task Force (CJTF) flagship when national interests require it.
The BLUE RIDGE is equipped with an extremely sophisticated Command and Control system. The Joint Maritime Command Information System(JMCIS) consists of numerous powerful computers distributed throughout the ship from which information and data from worldwide sources are entered into a central database. This single integrated database concentrates the available information into a complete tactical picture of air, surface and subsurface contacts, enabling the Fleet Commander to quickly assess and concentrate on any situation which might arise. This ability to access information from military and civilian sources throughout the world gives BLUE RIDGE a global command and control capability unparalleled in Naval history.
In addition to its sophisticated command and control system, an extremely refined communications system is also an integral part of the ship's radical new design. Through an automated patch panel and computer-controlled switching matrix, any combination of communications equipment desired may be quickly connected. The "clean" topside area is the result of careful design intended to keep the ship's interference to her own communications system at a minimum.
Notes of Interest:
BLUE RIDGE carries enough food to feed the crew for 90 days and can transport supplies to support an emergency evacuation of 3,000 people.
BLUE RIDGE has accommodations for more than 250 officers, 1,200 enlisted men and 100 enlisted females.
More infos can be found at: http://www.facebook.com/USSBlueRidge