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Leah Baker, Military Sealift Command's Director, Office of Small Business Programs, addresses potential business partners during the command's Virtual Small Business Industry Day, hosted from the MSC headquarters, on Naval Station Norfolk, Oct. 14. The event was held to foster future partnerships between MSC and industry leaders.

Information System Technician 2nd Class Nathan A. Milca, right, and Electronics Technician 2nd Class Drake W. Childers perform annual maintenance on the forward house antennae aboard the Expeditionary Sea Base USS Hershel "Woody" Williams (ESB 4) while moored in Cape Town, South Africa for a regularly scheduled maintenance period, Oct. 5, 2021.

WHITE BEACH, Japan (Oct. 6, 2021) Lewis B. Puller-class expeditionary staging base USS Miguel Keith (ESB 5) anchors off Commander, Fleet Activities Okinawa White Beach Naval Facility Oct. 6, 2021. Miguel Keith, assigned to Amphibious Squadron Eleven, is operating in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility to enhance interoperability with allies and partners and serve as a ready response force to defend peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jessica Ann Hattell)

U.S. Marines with 3d Battalion, 12th Marines load a medium tactical vehicle replacement onto the Spearhead-class expeditionary fast transport USNS Brunswick (T-EPF 6) during Exercise Noble Jaguar 2021 at Naha Port, Okinawa, Japan

Military Sealift Command’s prepositioning and seabasing ship, USNS Pililaau (T-AKR 304), takes part in MALABAR 21 on Aug. 30.

From left, members of the Military Sealift Command Office Korea’s reserve unit, including, FCC Allen Ganir, Capt. Roger Ouimet, Cmdr. Levi Broeckelman and Cmdr. Brad Newcomer, returned to the Republic of Korea in August to work with their MSC, Navy, combined and joint counterparts during a particularly busy training period.

The Expeditionary Sea Base USS Hershel "Woody" Williams (ESB 4) pulls into port in Cape Town, South Africa, Sept. 25, 2021. Hershel "Woody" Williams is on a scheduled deployment in the U.S. Sixth Fleet area of operations in in support of U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.

Ship in the Spotlight

Ship In the Spotlight This week help us recognize the crew of our Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo ship USNS Alan Shepard (T-AKE 3) who helped test the capabilities of the BQM-177A, the Navy's next-generation Sub-Sonic Aerial Target, while operating in the Western Pacific in September.

"The BQM-177A enhances our readiness because it increases our training capabilities," said Cmdr. Eli Marshall, range operations officer assigned to Pacific Missile Range Facility in Barking Sands, Hawaii.

This sub-sonic aerial target replicates modern subsonic anti-ship cruise missile threats launched from air, land, surface and subsurface to test the effectiveness of shipboard air defense systems and is used for fleet training. Capable of speeds in excess of 0.95 Mach and a sea-skimming altitude as low as 6.6 feet, the BQM-177A has no equal when it comes to delivering realistic anti-ship missile threat emulation, according to program managers at Naval Air Systems Command.

The BQM-177A provides threat emulation for air-to-air engagements. The BQM-177A's aerodynamic design and performance capabilities provide high-dynamic, high-subsonic and sea-skimming anti-ship cruise missile threat emulation. This versatile aerial target supports a variety of mission requirements by carrying a wide array of internal and external payloads. These include proximity scoring, Identification Friend or Foe, passive and active RF augmentation, electronic counter-measures, infrared augmentation (plume pods), chaff and flare dispensers, and towed targets.

The Navy is in the process of replacing current air-to-air target simulators with the BQM-177A.

Alan Shepard, a fleet ordnance and dry cargo ship, was selected as the first vessel in the U.S. Navy's Combat Logistics Force operating in the Western Pacific to help test the new capability.

"Alan Shepard's crew is helping provide valuable training for our warfighters in the WESTPAC area of responsibility," Marshall said.

Blast From the Past

Blast From the Past
USNS Longview (T-AGM 3) was a Longview-class missile range instrumentation ship which was converted to use as a missile tracking ship operating in the Pacific Ocean.

Longview was originally named SS Haiti Victory (T-AGM 238) and operated as a Greenville-class cargo Victory ship in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans during World War II. Haiti Victory (T-AK 238) was laid down under U.S. Maritime Commission contract by Permanente Metals Corporation, Richmond, California, on April 22, 1944. The ship was launched on July 20, 1944and delivered to the War Shipping Administration on Sept. 18, 1944.

In 1950, Haiti Victory was assigned to the Military Sea Transportation Service for cargo operations in the Atlantic Ocean, and became the first ship to recover a space vehicle from orbit. On Aug. 11, 1960, a helicopter from the ship retrieved a 300-pound capsule that was launched into orbit the previous day by a Thor-Agena rocket as part of the Central Intelligence Agency’s Corona spy satellite project.

Haiti Victory was renamed Longview and re-classified T-AGM 3 in November 1960, and continued operations in the Pacific supporting the U.S. space program.

(Pictured: USNS Longview underway, May 1970)
 
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