Dear Stennis Family and Friends,

Since returning from deployment, maintenance has been our focus and is our mission, so I’d like to give you a quick update on the great work our USS John C. Stennis and Puget Sound Naval Shipyard (PSNS) team is doing during our current maintenance period.

Since entering dry dock on June 27, both 55-ton rudders, all four 18-ton propellers, and all four shafts have been removed for refurbishing while we are preserving and painting the hull. On the flight deck, three of our four catapults were disassembled and all four arresting gear wires have been removed as these systems undergo complete overhauls that will increase the level of safety for pilots and flight deck personnel.

While our island structure is being completely preserved and repainted by the crew, our satellite communications suites were removed to make way for the first full Navy Multiband Terminal (NMT) installation on an aircraft carrier. Our radar systems are also being upgraded to improve both air and surface search capabilities. Our Close-In Weapon’s System (CIWS) is being modified to add forward-looking infrared (FLIR) and a surface mode to counter threats from small craft or helicopters. These radar, communication and defensive systems modifications will enhance our operations at sea and reduce the number of man-hours required to maintain equipment.

Internally, the Consolidated Afloat Network Enterprise Service (CANES) computer network system is being installed, another first for an aircraft carrier. Over 100 miles of cable is being replaced and installed along with new computers, servers and interface software to provide a secure, flexible architecture to support command, control, communications, computers and intelligence (C4I) applications.

The scheduled maintenance for John C. Stennis remains funded and on schedule despite the uncertain budget environment.

We still have a great deal of work to complete, but you should be very proud, as I am, of our team’s performance each and every day. I want to send a special thank to all our families and loved ones. Your continued support will help us get to the finish line.

Captain Mike Wettlaufer
Commanding Officer
USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74)