“PPG launches “breakthrough” fouling release coating” –Marine Log

“Sigmaglide 2390 fouling release coating has a super-smooth, near friction-free surface when immersed in water” –PPG

Marine Log reports,

PPG (NYSE: PPG) has launched a biocide-free fouling release coating that, it says, uses a breakthrough approach to help shipowners lower power consumption and carbon emissions and meet demands for higher performance with no adverse impact on the marine environment.

Called PPG Sigmaglide 2390, the coating is based on PPG’s HydroReset technology. This modifies the coating when it is immersed in water to create a super-smooth, almost friction-free surface that marine organisms do not recognize and cannot adhere to.

This almost certainly a PPG news release, but if true, it is potentially very significant. Let’s hope so.

“Video: Interview With VADM Cooper On TF 59 Milestones, US 5th Fleet” –Naval News

Naval News provides a video of an interview with 5th Fleet/NAVCENT commander VAdm Charles Bradford (Brad) Cooper II. In addition to the video above, the Naval News post provides a transcript of the interview (always appreciated).

The video provides more than talking heads. There are snippets of video showing the operation of unmanned systems and the people mentioned.

PATFORSWA Webber class cutters show up in the video three times.

Task Force 59 is an exciting development. It appears likely this model will be replicated in other areas including with the 4th Fleet in the Drug Transit Zone. Hopefully the Coast Guard is taking the opportunity to learn as much as possible from these operations. If the Coast Guard does not have a Coast Guard R&D liaison to Task Force 59 we are missing a good bet.

221207-N-NO146-1001 ARABIAN GULF (Dec. 7, 2022) An Aerovel Flexrotor unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) takes off from U.S. Coast Guard fast response cutter USCGC Emlen Tunnell (WPC 1145) transiting the Arabian Gulf, Dec. 7. U.S. 5th Fleet’s Task Force 59 launched the UAV during Digital Horizon, a three-week event focused on integrating new unmanned and artificial intelligence platforms, including 10 that are in the region for the first time. (U.S. Navy photo)


“Ship Class Designations Have Meaning” –USNI

USCGC BERTHOLF (WPF-750 or maybe WPL-750)

The March 2023 issue of US Naval Institute Proceedings has an opinion piece in the “Nobody Asked Me, But…” section. The author notes,

“The Navy does itself a disservice with the public, Congress, and U.S. allies when it allows a program’s Pentagon PowerPoint acronym to become the class designation. There was some recent recognition of this issue when the JHSV (Joint High Speed Vessel) became the T-EPFs (expedition-ary fast transports), the MLP/AFSB (Mobile Landing Platform/Afloat For-ward Staging Base) became ESDs/ESBs (expeditionary transfer docks/expedition-ary sea bases), and the pending LAW (Light Amphibious Warship) became the LSM (landing ship medium), but there is still room for improvement.”

The author goes on to suggest several additional redesignations.

I have pointed out in the past that Coast Guard designations for the Bertholf class NSCs (WMSL) and the Argus class OPCs (WMSM) are particularly egregious examples of departure from historical and current standard US Navy and NATO designation practices.

Virtually no one outside the Coast Guard knows what they are supposed to mean, not to mention that there is virtually no difference in size between the NSCs and OPCs, so why are the NSCs “large” and the OPCs “medium?”

Really, WPF, Coast Guard Patrol Frigate or WPL, Coast Guard Patrol Large, would do nicely for both. If you still want to give the OPCs a lower rank or perhaps for the existing WMECs, WPK, Coast Guard Patrol Corvette (K for Corvette is a NATO standard) or WPM, Coast Guard Patrol Medium, would work.

If you really want to differentiate further, take a look at what the Japanese Coast Guard did–neat, simple, easily understood.

  • PLH (Patrol Vessel Large with Helicopter)
  • PL (Patrol Vessel Large)
  • PM (Patrol Vessel Medium)
  • PS (Patrol Vessel Small)
  • PC (Patrol Craft)
  • CL (Craft Large)

Really, WPB, WPC, WPK and WPF or just WPB, WPC, WPM, and WPL would work just fine.

We changed the designation system in the late ’60s. The Navy has changed some of their designations. Maybe it is time for the Coast Guard to return to a more rationale, easily understood, and meaningful system.

“Coast Guard Migrant Interdiction Operations Are in a State of Emergency” –USNI

A Coast Guard Cutter Campbell law enforcement crew stopped a grossly overloaded, unsafe vessel near Turks and Caicos, May 9, 2022. Coast Guard Cutter Campbell is homeported in Kittery, Maine. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Erik Villa-Rodriguez)

The February issue of US Naval Institute Proceedings has a rather grim description of Alien Migrant Interdiction Operations in the 7th District. The number of Cubans and Haitians putting out to sea has increased dramatically.

We have talked about this growing problem before,

but this is by far the clearest description of the challenges of these operations.

“USCGC Decisive decommissioned after 55 years of service” –LANTAREA

Let’s not forget that Decisive was one of the newest WMEC210s, 15th in the class of 16. We still have not seen the first OPC and unless they are decommissioned without replacement, we can expect to have 210s around for the next ten years.–Chuck

USCGC Decisive decommissioned after 55 years of service

PENSACOLA, Fla. — The Coast Guard decommissioned USCGC Decisive (WMEC 629) during a ceremony at Naval Air Station Pensacola, Thursday.

Vice Adm. Kevin E. Lunday, commander of Coast Guard Atlantic Area, presided over the ceremony honoring the 55 years of service Decisive and its crews provided to the Coast Guard.

Commissioned in 1968, Decisive was the 15th of 16 Reliance-class medium endurance cutters built for search and rescue, drug and migrant interdiction. It is the first 210-foot cutter to be decommissioned since USCGC Courageous (WMEC 622) and USCGC Durable (WMEC 628) in 2001.

“Decisive is a special ship that has served many districts throughout its history,” said Cmdr. Aaron Delano-Johnson, commanding officer of Decisive. “With a variety of high-performing Coast Guard members with distinguished careers, Decisive boasted some of the finest crews throughout its tenure. Decisive has been a fixture in all four of its homeports, remaining durable and dependable throughout history. I personally want to thank the crew for their dedication and service to our great nation as they were instrumental to upholding the cutter’s motto of being dedicated to duty.”

Decisive’s keel was laid on May 12, 1967, at the Coast Guard Yard in Baltimore, Maryland. Decisive was launched Dec. 14, 1967, and commissioned Aug. 23, 1968. Following its commissioning in 1968, the ship was homeported in New Castle, New Hampshire. The cutter moved homeports several times during its tenure, including St. Petersburg, Florida and Pascagoula, Mississippi before its final assignment to Pensacola.

During the cutter’s last year of service, the sunset crew of 12 officers and 62 enlisted members conducted high profile operations including assistance in the repatriation of over 400 migrants in a week’s time while patrolling the South Florida Straits. Decisive’s crew assisted with a 200 person mass migrant transfer, the largest single repatriation effort at the time since the 1980 Mariel Boatlift.

“I am immensely honored being the final commanding officer of Decisive,” said Delano-Johnson. “As I pause and reflect, remembering the first time I saw the ship as a junior officer aboard a patrol boat in the Straits of Florida, the pride I feel commanding this ship is indescribable. To lead this sunset crew and watch them grow over the past year has been humbling and rewarding. I am grateful for their dedication and service and look forward to staying in touch and following their careers. While our business here is done, we will proudly carry on Decisive’s legacy of hard work and reliability.”

Decisive was one of the Coast Guard’s 14 remaining 210-foot, Reliance-class medium endurance cutters. As part of the Coast Guard’s acquisition program, the 360-foot Heritage-class offshore patrol cutters will replace the Coast Guard’s 270-foot and 210-foot medium endurance cutters. The offshore patrol cutters will provide the majority of offshore presence for the Coast Guard’s cutter fleet, bridging the capabilities of the 418-foot national security cutters, which patrol the open ocean, and the 154-foot fast response cutters, which serve closer to shore.

For information on how to join the U.S. Coast Guard, visit GoCoastGuard.com to learn about active duty and reserve, officer and enlisted opportunities. Information on how to apply to the U.S. Coast Guard Academy can be found here.

“U.S. Coast Guard delivers 4,500 lbs of supplies to Federated States of Micronesia atolls” –U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia / Sector Guam

Ulithi Atoll north anchorage and Sorlen Island, late 1944.

Coast Guard out there doing good work. I added the photo above to show how important Ulithi was as an advanced base during WWII.

News Release

U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia / Sector Guam

U.S. Coast Guard delivers 4,500 lbs of supplies to Federated States of Micronesia atolls

The crew of USCGC Oliver Henry (WPC 1140) loads more than 4,500 pounds of donations from the Ayuda Foundation bound for Yap State The crew of USCGC Oliver Henry (WPC 1140) loads more than 4,500 pounds of donations from the Ayuda Foundation bound for Yap State Petty Officer 1st Class Ikaia Ruiz looks out to Falalop Island, Woleai, on the small boat’s first approach
USCGC Oliver Henry (WPC 1140) crew offload donated supplies in Falalop Island, Ulithi Petty Officer 2nd Class Van Dinter-Frydemberg troubleshooting a faulty marine radio in Falalop Island, Woleai, Prospective U.S. Coast Guard recruits on Falalop Island, Ulithi,

Editor’s Note: Click on the images above to view more or download high-resolution versions.

SANTA RITA, Guam — The crew of USCGC Oliver Henry (WPC 1140) returned to Guam on Monday, Feb. 27, 2023, following a week-long deployment to the Federated States of Micronesia countering illegal fishing and strengthening partnerships with the local island communities of several Yap outer island atolls, part of the ongoing Operation Rematau.

During the patrol, the crew supported partners in the Federated States of Micronesia, completing four port calls and four community relations events. They also provided underway training opportunities for eight members assigned to temporary duty on the ship. They enhanced the ongoing U.S. Coast Guard and U.S. Navy partnership, embarking two medical personnel from U.S. Naval Hospital Guam.

Partnering with the Ayuda Foundation, the Oliver Henry crew onloaded more than 4,500 lbs. of supplies generously donated by local businesses and community members in Guam for future transport to remote islands in Ulithi and Woleai atolls. Donated supplies included educational material, clothing, kitchenware, fishing gear, toys, shelf-stable meals, interior paint, marine-grade orange paint, marine fiberglass repair kits, and water pumps. Water pumps were specifically requested to divert standing water from the airfield on Falalop Island, Woleai, to nearby taro fields to facilitate uninterrupted flight services from mainland Yap.

Oliver Henry’s first stop was Ulithi Atoll, the second time a fast response cutter visited the atoll. Ulithi was a central U.S. staging area during World War II, and home to a U.S. Coast Guard Loran-C communications station from 1944 to 1965 before operations relocated to Yap and ultimately shuttered in 1987. During the visit, the Oliver Henry crew met with community members on the islands of Mogmog and Falalop and participated in a friendly basketball game with Outer Islands High School students in Falalop, Ulithi.

Their second stop was Woleai Atoll, which marked the first-ever visit by a fast response cutter to this remote atoll. Ten five-gallon buckets of orange paint were delivered to Woleai and will be further distributed to the outer islands for use on skiffs and small vessels. The Orange Paint Initiative seeks to improve the visibility of small vessels by making their hulls more visible, which is vital to responders in search and rescue instances. In addition to offloading donated supplies and meeting with community members, the Oliver Henry crew also rendered assistance by troubleshooting issues with a solar power supply unit and marine radio communications equipment. Further, the Oliver Henry crew also deployed an aerial drone to capture imagery of infrastructure on the principal island of Falalop, Woleai.

“Nothing is more heartwarming for the crew than to experience what we just completed during our visits to Ulithi and Woleai. It was evident the island communities reciprocated these feelings,” said Lt. Freddy Hofschneider, commanding officer of Oliver Henry. “They welcomed us with smiles, flower leis, and open arms, and we truly enjoyed their hospitality. Transporting supplies to these remote atolls is nothing new for the Coast Guard, and we are honored to join in on the tradition spanning several decades for Guam-based Coast Guard cutter crews. We thank the Ayuda Foundation for spearheading donation collection efforts and look forward to continued opportunities to strengthen relationships with our brothers and sisters across Micronesia in a manner that supports their way of life.”

The Oliver Henry is the 40th 154-foot Sentinel-class fast response cutter named for Oliver T. Henry, Jr., an enlisted African American Coast Guard member first to break the color barrier of a then-segregated Service. During World War II, Henry served under Lt. Cmdr. Carlton Skinner. The latter became the first civilian Governor of Guam and played a critical role in developing the Organic Act in 1950. Henry blazed a trail for minorities in the U.S. military as he climbed from enlisted ranks while serving on ten Coast Guard cutters, finally retiring as a chief warrant officer in 1966.

Operation Rematau is how U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia/Sector Guam supports the overarching Coast Guard endeavor Operation Blue Pacific to promote security, safety, sovereignty, and economic prosperity in Oceania. Rematau means people of the deep sea. It recognizes the wisdom of the Pacific Island Forum leaders in that securing the future requires long-term vision and a carefully considered regional strategy for the Blue Pacific Continent. Op Rematau reinforces U.S. commitment to working together to advance Pacific regionalism based on the Blue Pacific narrative. This action supports U.S. national security objectives, bolstering regional maritime governance and security.

For more U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia/Sector Guam news, visit us on DVIDS or subscribe! You can also visit us on Facebook or Instagram at @USCGForcesMicronesia or Twitter @USCGFMSG. 

“Coast Guard Commandant to deliver her first State of the Coast Guard Address” March 7 –CG HQ News Release

Admiral Linda L. Fagan

March 2, 2023

Coast Guard Commandant to deliver her first State of the Coast Guard Address

WHO: Adm. Linda L. Fagan, commandant of the United States Coast Guard

WHEN: 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, Mar. 7, 2023

WHERE: Reserve Organization of America, 1 Constitution Ave NE, Washington, DC 20002

WHAT: Media must RSVP at MediaRelations@uscg.mil no later than Monday, Mar. 6 at 12:00 p.m.

WASHINGTON — The 27th commandant of the United States Coast Guard is scheduled to deliver her first State of the Coast Guard Address, Tuesday, in Washington, DC.

Adm. Linda L. Fagan will provide her vision for the future of the service and commit to prioritizing support for the Coast Guard workforce, who serve our nation’s interests around the world, to a live audience of government officials, senior military commanders, and partner agency leaders.

She will discuss the growing demand for Coast Guard operations throughout the world, and how advances in technology, changes in the global economy, and the impacts of climate change influence this demand.

Adm. Fagan will outline how the Coast Guard will continue to facilitate and protect the uninterrupted flow of commerce in the rapidly changing Marine Transportation System. She will also emphasize the importance of new Coast Guard assets and shore facilities, which are critical to national security, public safety, and the future success of the service.

Media attendance will be limited. The speech will be recorded and posted on the Coast Guard website and on YouTube.

For more information follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

“U.S. Forces Assist UK Seizure of Missiles Shipped from Iran” –NAVCENT

U.S. 5TH FLEET AREA OF OPERATIONS (Feb. 26, 2023) Anti-tank guided missiles and medium-range ballistic missile components seized by the United Kingdom Royal Navy sit pierside during inventory at a military facility in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations, Feb. 26, 2023.U.S. 5TH FLEET AREA OF OPERATIONS (Feb. 26, 2023) Anti-tank guided missiles and medium-range ballistic missile components seized by the United Kingdom Royal Navy sit pierside during inventory at a military facility in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations, Feb. 26, 2023. (Photo by Sgt. Brandon Murphy)

U.S. Forces Assist UK Seizure of Missiles Shipped from Iran

By U.S. Naval Forces Central Command Public Affairs | March 02, 2023

MANAMA, Bahrain —U.S. forces provided airborne intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance support for an interdiction in the Gulf of Oman conducted by the United Kingdom Royal Navy, Feb. 23, that resulted in the discovery of an illegal weapons shipment from Iran.

Coordinated efforts among U.S. and UK maritime forces led to Royal Navy frigate HMS Lancaster (F229) confiscating anti-tank guided missiles and missile components from a small boat that originated from Iran. UK forces discovered packages that included Iranian versions of Russian 9M133 Kornet anti-tank guided missiles, known in Iran as “Dehlavieh,” and medium-range ballistic missile components.

“This is the seventh illegal weapon or drug interdiction in the last three months and yet another example of Iran’s increasing malign maritime activity across the region,” said Vice Adm. Brad Cooper, commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, U.S. 5th Fleet and Combined Maritime Forces. “We will continue to work with our partners in pursuing any destabilizing activity that threatens regional maritime security and stability.”

The interdiction occurred along a route historically used to traffic weapons unlawfully to Yemen. The direct or indirect supply, sale or transfer of weapons to the Houthis in Yemen violates U.N. Security Council Resolution 2216 and international law.

U.S. and UK naval forces regularly conduct combined maritime security operations to disrupt the flow of illicit cargo in Middle East waters. Last year, U.S. Navy guided-missile destroyer USS Gridley (DDG 101), Royal Navy frigate HMS Montrose (F236) and combined air assets led to Royal Navy forces seizing surface-to-air missiles and land-attack cruise-missile engines.

In the past three months, seven major interdictions have resulted in U.S. and partner maritime forces seizing more than 5,000 weapons, 1.6 million rounds of ammunition, 7,000 proximity fuses for rockets, 2,100 kilograms of propellant used to launch rocket propelled grenades, 30 anti-tank guided missiles, medium-range ballistic missile components and $80 million worth of illegal drugs.

U.S. Naval Forces Central Command and United Kingdom Maritime Component Command are headquartered in Manama, Bahrain.

“New Eyes in the Sky for Coast Guard and CBP” –USNI

A Tethered Aerostat Radar System (TARS) balloon being tested in 2019. The aerostat-borne surveillance system provides radar detection and monitoring of aircraft and surface targets along the U.S.-Mexico border and in the Gulf of Mexico.

The March issue of US Naval Institute Proceedings reports,

It is not only China that is getting into balloon-based intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR). (See “Spy Balloons.”) A little-noticed provision of the 2023 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) directs that “not fewer than 1 tethered aerostat radar system, or similar technology” be provided to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) “for use by the Coast Guard” to improve situational awareness regarding a variety of illegal activities in the Gulf of Mexico and along the Gulf Coast.

The Aerostat is positioned on South Padre Island and is controlled by Customs and Border Protection but should help with Maritime Domain Awareness.

Might be worth asking why the Coast Guard does not control this asset, but it may be particularly useful for intercepting airborne smuggling which is no longer a Coast Guard mission.