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The United States Navy has given up on the idea of giving away to a good home the formerly spr sekrt stealth ship Sea Shadow. That means that this expensive piece of Bay Area military memorabilia will soon be cut up for scrap.
Good bye, IX-529.
But we’ll always have memories, like right here – check it out, from back in the day last year.
All the deets:
Remember back in the day, back when Bay Areans could espy the straight-outta-Redwood-City $200-million Sea Shadow stealth ship bobbing about in San Francisco Bay? Check this video from down Fun Diego way over at Telstar Logistics to see this baby in action.
Say it aloud: Super-Secret Sea Shadow Stealth Ship, Super-Secret Sea Shadow Stealth Ship, Super-Secret Sea Shadow Stealth Ship! This project was so secret that it didn’t make the Bay Area newspapers, excepting for 1999 when this boat was identified as an airplane three times by the San Francisco Examiner.*
This is what she looked like, coming out in the daytime when she was no longer so very supr sekrt:
Guess what, the U.S. Navy wants to give her away for free! The problem is that there are no takers as of yet, so the ex Sea Shadow just sits around in the mothballed Ghost Fleet of the East Bay. Check out these recent photos from Amy Heiden. Pretty boss, huh?
Now the first time the Navy tried to give away this historic boat, in 2006, they had all sorts of rules. Then they tried again in 2009 with more flexible rules. But the problem is that you can’t just take the Shadow, you also have to take the Hughes Mining Barge (HMB-1), a floating drydock boat that was developed as part of Project Jennifer. (That was the semi-successful, top-secret effort mounted by the Central Intelligence Agency to salvage the remains of the Soviet submarine K-129 from the ocean floor.)
Here’s a shot of them together, ignore the two conventional warships in the background:
But wait, there’s more. Here’s how the Sea Shadow is laid out on the inside:
The bridge of Grant Imahara’s future evil lair. (Boy, talk about a glass cockpit, huh?)
And here’s how she looks from the outside:
You want. Why don’t you start up a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and take these things off of the Navy’s hands? Otherwise an important piece of Bay Area military history (and film history what with it inspiring the bad guys’ floating lair in Tomorrow Never Dies) is a gonna get scrapped.
Here’s what came next, after the Shadow got mothballed – it’s the all-aluminum Sea Fighter, as seen back in 2006:
The point being is that the aging Sea Shadow is the ur-ship, the JetFire of the stealth boat world. Won’t you save her?
O.K., first things first. Check out the owner’s manuals and start writing your business plan. (And, oh yes, while you’re at it, scrape up some cash. Lots and lots and lots o’ cash.)
The Navy’s announcement, after the jump.
*From 1999: “The combined Navy-Marine exercise included overflights of the Bay Area by the Sea Shadow, the Navy equivalent of the stealth bomber.” No, this thing can’t fly, it just floats. Veteran SF Chronicle writer Henry K. Lee got that right but others did not. Nevertheless, SFGate.com, San Francisco’s online newspaper, remains an invaluable resource.
You know why that Carnival Splendor cruise ship got towed to a San Francisco dry dock all the way up from Fun Diego last month, you know why her owners chose the 415 as the place where she’d get a new engine and get a whole bunch of work done?
Because they didn’t really have a choice, that’s why. If your 300-yard+ vessel needs to come out of the briny somewhere in the Eastern Pacific, odds are you’ll bring it here. Hurray!
So, why did the fire in one engine room affect the other engine room? Answer here.
The view from our world-class San Francisco Oakland Bay Bridge. (It’s only been two decades since that earthquake and we’re almost done fixing it up already!) Now-defunct Potrero Power Plant camera right:
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Anyway, the Splendor is loaded up and chugging towards Mexico, back OTJ.
I don’t know, don’t you ever wish you could have a new name? Like Penelope or Scout or ANYTHING, ANYTHING BUT CARNIVAL SPLENDOR?
I mean if the Condoleezza Rice can change her name, then anything’s possible, right?
Anyway, here she is, preparing to be sitting on the dry dock of the Bay at Pier 80.
And hey, just what she needs – a new engine all the way from Trieste Italy. Thanks Wärtsilä!
Oh, better check the packing list to make sure it’s all there.
Bon Courage, Pier 80 workers!
Bon Voyage, Carnival _______!
Start working on your coping strategy now, so you’ll be prepared when the building you’re in starts to vibrate on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
U.S. Navy Blue Angels to Arrive at SFO – Precision Flight Demonstration to Prepare for Fleet Week Air ShowSAN FRANCISCO – The U.S. Navy’s precision flight demonstration team, the Blue Angels, will arrive, in formation, at San Francisco International Airport on Monday, October 4, 2010 at approximately 1:30 p.m. PDT. The Blue Angels will be conducting familiarization and practice flights on both Thursday, October 7, and Friday, October 8. The Blue Angels will perform for the Fleet Week Air Show on Saturday, October 9 and again on Sunday, October 10. All flights, both practices and air show, subject to change and cancellation due to weather.
The forecast is for clear skies, so nothing’s going to stop this…
Bon courage, mon amie!
A member of the Fourth Estate, probably not Tim Redmond and probably not S T Jones, goes for a ridealong during a practice run over the 415:
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Flying by using The Buddy System – you don’t look ahead, you just follow the leader:
See the people atop the PG&E Tower of our GGB?
Photoshop’s Glowing Edge…
…or not, your choice:
Glowing Edge again, no choice this time:
The Other Tower on the Marin County side, the North Tower:
Loud, loud, loud:
And an oldie from 2005, high above California’s I-80 Interstate:
South San Francisco’s Solazyme has made good on its promise to deliver 1500 gallons of algae-based jet fuel to the U.S. Navy.
Will military jets like this F-18 Super Hornet soon be flying on algal fuel?
Looks that way, one of these days. And actually, aviation biofuels soon could be coming to an aircraft near you.
All the deets:
Solazyme Delivers 100% Algal-Derived Renewable Jet Fuel to U.S. Navy
Biotechnology Company Showcases Solajet(TM) HRJ-5 Jet Fuel at the World-famous Farnborough International Air Show in UK
SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., July 18 — Solazyme, Inc. is helping the U.S. military move closer to powering its planes, ships, tanks and trucks on renewable fuel and has delivered of 1,500 gallons of 100% algae-based jet fuel for the U.S. Navy’s testing and certification program. The U.S. Navy has previously announced the objective to operate at least 50% of its fleet on clean, renewable fuel by 2020, and the delivery fulfills a contract awarded to Solazyme by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) in September 2009.
Solazyme, a renewable oil and green bioproducts company and leader in algal biotechnology, manufactured the world’s first 100% algal-based jet fuel through its proprietary fermentation process in collaboration with renewable jet fuel processing technology from Honeywell’s UOP. Solazyme’s renewable Solajet(TM)HRJ-5 is designed to meet all of the requirements for Naval renewable aviation fuel. In preliminary tests, it also meets the fuel requirements of the U.S. Air Force and meets the standards for commercial jet fuel.
“It has been an honor to work with both the Navy and DESC/DLA to provide the first microbial derived advanced biojet fuel that will aid the military’s transition away from fossil fuel and toward more secure, renewable and reliable sources,” said Jonathan Wolfson, CEO, Solazyme. “The military has recognized the national security imperative of creating alternative energy solutions, and this project reflects their leadership and vision in supporting new ways to power our Department of Defense.”
Solazyme’s algal fuel technology will help the DoD reduce its carbon footprint, minimize reliance on foreign oil, combat global climate change and pioneer the development of clean and renewable energy sources for national energy security.
Verified through external lifecycle analyses, Solazyme’s fuels provide an 85% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions compared to traditional fossil fuels. Prior to delivery to the Navy, the fuel was tested by an independent testing laboratory, and met all of the Navy’s 19 rigorous requirements for renewable hydrotreated jet fuel. In addition, the fuel meets the proposed ASTM D 7566 specification for Aviation Turbine Fuels containing synthesized hydrocarbons, which is a critical milestone for providing fuels not only for the military, but also for the civilian market.
Solazyme, Inc. is a renewable oil and bioproducts company and the leader in algal biotechnology. Founded in 2003 and headquartered in South San Francisco, Solazyme’s unique technology enables the production of oil and biomaterials in standard fermentation facilities quickly, efficiently and at large scale. These oils and biomaterials are tailored to be drop-in replacements for fossil fuel and plant oils, which are feedstocks for a diverse range of products ranging from fuels and chemicals to personal care products. Solazyme’s products offer compelling solutions to the increasingly complex challenges of fuel scarcity, energy security and environmental impact. These products fit seamlessly into the pre-existing multi-trillion dollar fuel infrastructure. Solazyme’s investors among others include Braemar Energy Ventures, Harris & Harris Group, Lightspeed VenturePartners, The Roda Group, and VantagePoint Venture Partners. For more information, please visit our website: http://www.solazyme.com/.
Unlike the thousands of people at the Valrag down at Piers 30-32, the crowd at the Bunker Hill was manageable:
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Let’s start at the back, as the tours did. Countless Tomahawk missiles are down there, probs:
A five-inch gun, Harpoon missile launchers, and Old Glory - Gaia bless America:
Those petroleum mishaps clean up in a jiff with the Oil Spill Containment Kit:
The fix-it shop for twirlypoppers:
This giant bell sits amidships:
They turn it upside-down for baptisms, if you can read the etchings:
Now we’re at the bridge, where you can see the Financh and the Bay Bridge:
The helm. Left and right are clearly marked – how convenient!
The view from the bridge overlooking the waterfront:
Now we’re at the bow, where you can pose with an AR-15:
This isn’t your grandfather’s cruiser. The way you can tell that is by the small bore size of this five-inch gun. Of course, this is a missile boat, primarily, not a gun boat:
And way up at the fron, the First Navy Jack: Don’t Tread On Me. It’s in vogue now, in this post-9/11 era.
All the deets, in English and Russian:
And There You Have It.
Word on The Streets of San Francisco is that the U.S. Navy is, as of yesterday, planning to let regular people come aboard guided missile cruiser USS Bunker Hill (CG-52) today, Thursday, June 24th, 2010, from 1:00 to 4:00 PM at Piers 15-17.
That’s the updated rumor from the rumor from a couple days back. So, the Navy might do this. Maybe.
Keeping a weather eye out for them terrorists 24/7 whilst docked at Pier 17:
Of course the swells, the People That Matter, have already taken the tour. See the portkey tents on the ship and at the end of the pier? That’s the route.
The Navy might make an announcement about this or they might not.
Anyway, we’ll see how it goes.
A naval squadron fron Japan, consisting of two training ships, the Kashima and the Yamagiri, and an escorting destroyer, the Sawayuki, is blowing out of town today after docking at Pier 27 on Sunday.
As the free tours looked on Monday:
If only Tekka Sushi could have as warm a welcome.
Just what your fantail needs – a flock of Sea Sparrows:
Uh oh, they’re the old kind. Oh well. Hey, what’s the top speed of one of these things, anyway? What’s that, “fairly quick?” O.K.
Leave us depart.
Vaya con Gaia…