Saturday, November 10, 2007

Titan of the Seas

In the summer of 1994, while we were getting tired of being assaulted by the crowd in Virginia Beach, my friend Burt took us to visit The US Naval base in the Atlantic in Norfolk, Virginia - the largest naval station in the World.

After the usual tourist visit and guided tour, on our way to leave the base, we took a wrong turn and came across what looked like a really tall building. As we got closer, we realized that the building was in fact a huge ship.

We asked an officer about the boat and were told that it was the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower. It was not open to the public but he was kind enough to show us around (this was before the 911 events).

Boy, what an impressive ship it is!

Launched in 1975, it is the second of 10 Nimitz class aircraft carriers.

The asphated deck is so long (1092 ft.), that you can jog along it. It is 252 ft. wide.

The height, from keel to mast is 244 ft. (equal to 24-story building)

It is propelled by two giant nuclear reactors connected to 4 screws (66,200 lbs. each) up to more than 30 knots (54 km/h).

More than 6 200 men can live aboard.

Number of anchors: 2

Weight of anchors: 60,000 lbs. each

Anchor chain: 1,082 ft. on each anchor (365 lbs. per link)

Total anchor weight including chain: 735,000 lbs. each

Distillation plant capacity: 400,000 gals.

Number of light fixtures: approx. 29,000

But these are just numbers. When you are face to face with that giant, you are awed...

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