USS America ready for return to sea

U.S. Navy’s amphibious assault ship USS America (LHA 6) returned to sea March 21 after completing a 10-month post-shakedown availability maintenance period in which the ship underwent design improvements at the General Dynamics shipyard in San Diego, California.

America is now conducting sea trials to test the ship’s systems and sea-worthiness off the coast of Southern California.

On May 28, 2015 the ship became the first America-class ship to undergo deperming. Deperming is a process which reduces the ship’s magnetic signature by flashing the ship’s hull with electricity in order to help avoid detection and to minimize marine mine attraction to the steel hull.

Upon completing the maintenance period the ship’s crew got underway to test the “redesigned” ship.

Chief Boatswain’s Mate Christopher Tunal, first division leading chief petty officer, said: “Our biggest concern was doing everything safely and making sure no one got hurt.

“We did a very good job of getting people underway on various ships throughout the fleet, so every new sailor on board had at least two or three underways under their belt. By doing that, we were able to bring America the experience we needed to get her underway.”

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