STATES NAVAL FORCES MEDITERRANEAN
Information taken from the "Welcome Aboard" pamphlet used in a visit to Athens, Greece in 1947. I was aboard three years and made 3 deployments to the Med - got in a little sea time in those days also. All this and still an ensign.
During this cruise Rear Admiral George C. Dyer, USN was ComCruDiv 10; Capt Armand J. Robertson, USN was Commanding Officer of PROVIDENCE; and Cdr Ward F. Hardman, USN was the Executive Officer. From 1945 until 1974, I spent as much time in the Med as I did in U.S. waters.
Captain A.L. Blanks, USN (Ret.)
This photo,taken in 1947 although not too clear, shows a Skyhawk amidships (wings folded) on the hangar elevator, in a position to either be lowered into the hangar or hoisted using the aircraft crane to port or starboard catapult.
Per E-Mail Request
Subject: Aviation Hanger
Date: Sun, 6 Jun 1999 15:56:09 -0400
From: "A.L. Blanks" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: "Sam Villa" <email@example.com>
Hi, Sam. You're testing my memory again. The hangar compartment took in the second and third deck-space area below the main deck in the stern part of the ship. There were storage spaces on either side of the hanger deck proper and storerooms below. The aviation office was located on the extreme starboard side (small space). I think the second division living compartment was located on the second deck forward of the hanger. The V division had bunks and lockers in that compartment also when on board. A large hatch powered by electric motor(s) moved fore and aft to open and close the hanger opening. The elevator which was used to raise and lower the aircraft from the main deck level to the hanger deck level was located in such a position to be clear of the hanger hatch. In effect you opened the hanger hatch, raised the elevator, lowered the elevator and closed the hatch. I'm sure there were electrical cut off which prevented any collisions between hatch and elevator. A trunk (with entrance from the main deck) leading the aviation gas tanks was located aft of the hanger. Also the machinery spaces for the aviation crane were located aft of the hanger space.
There may be some gaps in my memory after
Hi, Sam. Here is the email in which I sent the PPT originally...just forwarding it after removing some of the address garbage. Let me know how it comes through.....and have a good weekend. al
Approaching Gatun Locks, Atlantic end of Panama Canal. There are parallel lanes- each lane has it's own lock system. Each channel operates independently. Our ship is approaching the left lane. A large container ship is using the right lane. The ship will go through three sets of locks, that is, it will be lifted three times to reach the level of Gatun Lake. As I recall Gatun Lake is approximately 86 feet above sea level. It requires 52 million gallons of fresh water from Gatun Lake each time a ship transits the canal - 26 million going in and 26 million coming out. It cost the CORAL PRINCESS $217,000 to make our transit in and out. Other photos will show locks at various water levels with ship alongside in parallel lane. CORAL PRINCESS is the largest ship to transit the canal - with approximately one foot clearance of each side. Ship is held centered in the lock by electric "mules" on each side of the ship, fore and aft. When the ship gets completely in a lock, the rear doors are closed and water is pumped into the lock to raise ship to level of the next lock set-up. Then the doors ahead are opened and process repeated in each lock system until ship is raised to level of Gatun Lake. Then the Lake doors are opened and the ship proceeds on its way into Gatun Lake.
Gatun Lake is a large fresh water lake using fresh water from watershed rivers. Ships anchor in the lake waiting their turn to transit the canal going both east and west. As I understand it, ships can only transit the locks going in the same direction. That is to say, in Gatun Locks (Atlantic side) ships using the parallel lock system must be proceeding in the same direction. The same of course is true using the Mira Flores Locks on the Pacific side. Going toward the Pacific, ships go from Gatun Lake through Gaillard (Culebra) Cut to reach the Pedro Miguel Locks, Mira Flores Lake and then the Mira Flores Locks. This channel had to be dug through the Continental Divide to make the connection between the Gatun Lake and the Pacific.
Ships shown include another cruise ship, a container ship and a U.S Navy frigate or destroyer.
HERE IS SOME ADDITIONAL INFORMATION WHICH I TYPED OFF A BROCHURE:
HOW DOES THE PANAMA CANAL WORK? The Panama Canal is a lock-type canal, approximately 80 kilometers long, that unites the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans at one of the narrowest points of both the Isthmus of Panama and the American continent. It official opened its doors to international trade on August 15, 1914, and since then over 874,000 vessels have transited the waterway.
The Canal's three sets of locks, each of which has two lanes, serve as water lifts which elevate ships 26 meters above sea level to Gatun Lake. Here they cross the Continental Divide, to then be lowered back to sea level on the opposite side of the Isthmus. During these lockages, which use water obtained from Gatun Lake, the miter gates seal the locks chambers and gravity drains the water to the lower levels. Approximately 197 million liters of fresh water are used for each lockage and ultimately flushed into the sea. Each set of locks features a Control House on the center wall of its higher chamber, from which this entire operation is directed.
Though vessels use their own propulsion for the greater part of their Panama Canal transit, they are assisted when passing through the locks, by electric locomotives which use cables to align and tow the ships. Working in pairs, locomotives move on rails and keep the vessels in position within the locks chambers. Depending on its size, a vessel can require the assistance of four to eight locomotives.
The 12.6 kilometer Gaillard or Culebra Cut is the narrowest stretch in the Panama Canal, representing 15 percent of the waterway's total length. The Cut, extending from the Pedro Miguel Locks to Gamboa, crosses the Continental Divide.
.......AND THAT'S ABOUT ALL I CAN TELL YOU.....DON'T KNOW HOW LONG IT TAKES TO GET THROUGH EACH SET OF LOCKS....SEEMS WE ENTERED THE LOCKS ABOUT 8 A.M. AND WERE IN GATUN LAKE BEFORE NOON.....
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