The US Navy’s Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S Truman has successfully completed an operational reactor safeguard examination (ORSE), ensuring the vessel’s ability to safely operate its two nuclear propulsion plants.
Conducted by its reactor department, the examination saw the ORSE team observing and grading complex engineering casualty drills, maintenance reviews, levels of knowledge and watchstander response testing.
Reactor department leading chief petty officer master chief electrician mate S Rivera said: "We’re tested through written and oral examinations, drills, maintenance evolutions and material condition inspections.
"In between ORSE assessments, we undergo quarterly inspections by the Mobile Training Team (MTT) covering the same material, so even our newest reactor sailors are well prepared for anything the ORSE team can throw at us."
According to Rivera, sailors faced many challenges as the examination included several complex scenarios that were put together by the ORSE team with the help of reactor training division’s drill coordinator machinist’s mate first-class A Richey.
USS Harry S Truman Reactor department will now start preparing for their next MTT inspection in January 2016.
However, Rivera stated that results of the ORSE inspection will reflect the reactor department’s efforts.
Rivera said "Even though we won’t see any official results from the inspectors for several weeks, there isn’t a question in my mind of how well we did.
"Our sailors hit every curveball that was thrown at them, and I think they knocked them all out of the park."
The nuclear-powered 317m-long Nimitz-class carriers are capable of cruising at a maximum speed of 30k and are armed with three Raytheon GMLS Mk29, and eight-cell launchers for Nato Sea Sparrow surface-to-air missiles.
Built by Newport News Shipbuilding, each of the nine nuclear-powered Nimitz-class carriers have a capacity to accommodate more than 6,000 personnel.
Image: The US Navy’s eighth Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S Truman. Photo: courtesy of US Navy photo by photographer’s mate second-class John L Beeman.