The Day The Sub Came

Catastrophe - The Day the Sun Went Out
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For the Japanese raiders, it was the latest of a number of reconnaissance flights conducted over Sydney providing valuable intelligence for an impending surprise attack on the numerous Allied warships anchored peacefully in the harbour. The disturbance in the water caused by the snared submarine was soon observed and subsequently reported at which time the patrol boats HMAS Yarroma and HMAS Lolita were ordered to investigate. Searchlights were quickly illuminated and shots were fired in its general direction.

Submarine - The Basics about U.S. Nuclear Powered Submarines

Half an hour later, Sub Lieutenant Ban fired two torpedoes at Chicago both of which missed the intended target. One ran ashore at Garden Island failing to explode, while the second passed under the Dutch submarine K9 striking the sea wall on Garden Island. It exploded on impact beneath the requisitioned Sydney Harbour ferry Kuttabul , which at that time was being used as an RAN depot ship.

Kuttabul sank immediately and 21 Allied naval ratings, 19 Australian and two British were killed. Others were badly injured or trapped. Bandsman MN Cumming had boarded Kuttabul only five minutes prior to the explosion and was fortunate to receive only minor cuts from the blast. At first he thought a bomb had hit the ship but instead of heading for the safety of shore, he stripped off and dived repeatedly into the bitterly cold watery wreckage ignoring shattered glass and jagged woodwork in a frantic search for survivors.

He is credited with rescuing three critically injured shipmates. Ordinary Seaman LT Combers was another who disregarded his own safety to return to the dangerous wreck and save the life of another.

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Although the harbour was alive with activity following the attack on Chicago , confusion reigned with some believing the gunfire to be part of a naval exercise as ships began to weigh anchor and proceed to sea. The following day RAN divers were sent to investigate the crippled vessel, finding its engines still running and its contra-rotating propellers slowly turning.

It was subsequently raised and its two man crew found dead inside from self inflicted gunshot wounds. The Day The Sun Went Dark As we stepped into the moonlight As we stepped into the moonlight There was singing from afar And all around the holy city Pilgrims camped under the stars When we reached the olive garden He went further in to pray We were frightened by his anguish And closed our eyes to make it go away.

And I dreamed that I was running With the devil at my back I woke up cold and shaking But they'd already sprung the trap There was a mob with clubs and torches Led by a traitor and a priest There were lies and bribes and Pharisees And a bargain with the Beast. The day the sun went dark So dark as doom The day the sun went dark at noon. In the early light the Governor Tried to wash his hands of guilt Never guessed that what he needed Was in the very blood that he had spilt As the sun grew hot that morning There were crosses on a hill And we heard the sound of hammer-blows As they closed in for the kill I saw triumph on their faces Thorny crown upon his head And everything that we'd believed in Was hanging by a thread.

The submarine's crew must simply convince themselves that none are close enough to pose a collision threat during the ascent to periscope depth. Underwater Ops - Surfacing and Emergency Blow Prior to surfacing, the submarine will proceed to periscope depth and take a look around to ensure there are no surface ship contacts that pose a collision threat while surfacing.

If everything's clear, the crew will use the submarine's stern planes and speed to drive the submarine as high out of the water as possible, then start the submarine's Low Pressure Blower, and start blowing the water out of the Main Ballast Tanks MBTs. In this case, switches are actuated in the submarine's Control Room which open valves that port pound air to the MBTs, forcing the water out of the tanks, making the submarine lighter very quickly. The submarine races to the ocean's surface, like a cork held deep underwater and then released.

Underwater Ops - How do you know where you are? As I mentioned in the Sonar Room post, submarines are blind underwater, and know what's going on around them only from what they hear. So how do they know where they are as they drive around for months on end? They can go to periscope depth and obtain a GPS fix from satellites in orbit.

But a submarine's primary means of navigation between fixes are its "inertial navigators".

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The camera was so cold, the battery didn't function. On older submarine classes, the tubes are fired with pound high pressure air, and it's pretty loud. Valerie Boris Illustrator. And in fact, he had placed them all at our disposal and this was quite an amazing set of operational circumstances because we controlled the entire resources of the Atlantic Fleet from a submarine at sea. In addition to Carbon Dioxide Scrubbers, submarines also have Hydrocarbon "Burners", which remove lots of other impurities from the air. Submarine Food - The Menu and the "Meat Identifier" Submarines serve 4 meals each day - breakfast, lunch, dinner, and mid-rats, so that each watch section can eat either before or after watch.

Two identical complicated machines that measure small changes in gravity to figure out in which direction the submarine is moving. These updates are fed to a navigation chart and compared to each other.

As long as they're both tracking together, life is good. These devices use small beryllium balls spinning around at thousands of revolutions per second, and variations of these navigation devices are also used on missiles. If you've heard the term ' "spinning up all missiles" as they're brought on-line for launch, it's a reference to their inertial navigators "spinning up" their beryllium balls. Underwater Ops - Tracking Targets It's so much easier to file a missile than it is to fire a torpedo. Two sweeps of the radar - mere seconds - and you've got a target solution.

Send it to the missile and fire. Why the difference? Radar delivers both bearing and range information. Submarines however, normally use passive sonar, which provides only bearing information. As a result, when a contact is gained, you know what bearing it's on, but you don't know how far away it is, its speed, or its course.

It could be a mile away heading east, or ten miles away heading west.

Guide The Day The Sub Came

So you can't shoot - just yet. You need to figure things out. There are ways to evaluate a contact's bearing and eventually determine its range, course, and speed. But it takes time. And if it maneuvers to a new course and speed while you're trying to figure it out, it makes it that much harder. When two submarines engage in a cat-and-mouse game hunting each other, each one constantly changing course and speed, it can be a nerve-wracking and time-consuming ordeal until one submarine crew decides they have a firing solution.

Now that we're underway and you've got the hang of how the submarine maneuvers and tracks contacts, we'll settle into the daily routine.

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First up - The Watch Cycle. Submarines operate on a 6 hour "watch" cycle. The crew is divided into 3 "watch" sections, and each section stands watch for 6 hours, then gets 12 hours off. During those 12 hours off, a crew member eats, sleeps, trains, and conducts maintenance. As a result, the crew operates on an 18, vice 24 hour day. However, the submarine, and senior enlisted and senior officers, remain on a 24 hour schedule, which causes a bit of havoc with the crew's biological clock.

So - they'll often be up for 24 hours straight without sleep, every third day. They'll try to catch an hour or two down here or there, but sometimes can't, depending on the ship's schedule or real-world ops. The Daily Routine - Drills, Drills, Drills I mentioned drills during yesterday's post, and submarines run a lot of them. Engineering drills, Ship drills, and Fire Control Party drills. Drill after drill, with the crew combating a never-ending affliction of things going wrong. In the Engineering spaces, the "nukes" - nickname for the nuclear-trained personnel - run drill after drill combating casualties that take down or cripple the reactor or propulsion plants, restoring them to full operation as quickly as possible.

The Daily Routine -Training and Qualification When you're not running drills during normal working hours, odds are you'll be studying something, whether in a formal classroom style lecture on reactor plant theory for the nukes during department level training, "in-rate" topics for the divisions during division level training, or hours upon hours of self-study as you qualify first one watch station, then another and another, or learning practically every piping run, valve, and switch on the submarine as you qualify in submarines and earn the right to wear the silver or gold "dolphins" on your chest.

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The studying never ends. The Daily Routine - Maintenance Never-ending maintenance. A submarine is incredibly complex with a lot of equipment, and a certain percentage of it always breaks. So pretty much every evening, real-world ops permitting, each division sets aside time for "Corrective" maintenance - fixing the stuff that's broken.

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Luckily, submarines have a lot of redundancy and can function with broken equipment while it's being repaired. Sorta like taking your car in for an oil change every 15, miles. A good portion of a crew member's hour "off time" is dedicated to maintenance.

The Daily Routine - Off-Watch Pastimes When you're not doing drills, training, maintenance, or studying, you might be able to squeeze out some time for relaxation. Normally that'd be every third day, coming off the afternoon watch, when you've got the evening and mid-watch off. One of the traditional naval card games is cribbage, although the photo looks like Saturday night poker, The Daily Routine - Working Out Is there time to work out on a submarine and the equipment to do so?

There won't be much equipment on board however. There's no standard equipment either - each submarine jams whatever they think they can fit aboard - typically one or two stationary bikes, maybe a rowing machine, a versa-climber, sometimes a treadmill. Some of the SSBNs, which have more room, have a universal style weight machine, and a lot of submarines will have a work bench with adjustable dumb bells, maybe a weight bar. Everything is focused on cramming as much utility into as little space as possible.

The Daily Routine - Sledding, Anyone? Okay, so submariners are still Big Kids, looking for ways to entertain themselves. When operations permit and the submarine is making depth changes with a steep angle - and assuming they been given a head's up and have the proper equipment although it doesn't take much, as you can see in the photo you can go sledding on a submarine. By now you're probably hungry, so we finally get to the topic of - Food! What's the food like aboard submarines?

We'll start with - The Loadout. The loadout is critical, because if you don't loadout properly, you'll run out of something critical, and you can't run to the local grocery store or So, like Santa, the cooks make their list and check it twice, and it includes a LOT of stuff. A typical loadout for an SSBN patrol includes: - pounds of coffee - pounds of butter, and - 22, eggs Due to space limitations, many items are baked aboard the submarine rather than brought aboard already made.

There's a Night Baker assigned to bake the white bread needed for sandwiches and toast, along with dinner rolls, hamburger and hoagie buns, and all the pastries, cakes, and cookies.

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And nothing tastes better than pies and cookies right out of the oven. Submarine Food - The Menu and the "Meat Identifier" Submarines serve 4 meals each day - breakfast, lunch, dinner, and mid-rats, so that each watch section can eat either before or after watch. For example, if you walk into the Wardroom and see applesauce on the table, you know you're having pork for dinner. Applesauce in this case is - the "Meat Identifier".

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Submarine Food - Fresh Veggies and Milk The 1st thing you'll run out of while underway is fresh fruits and vegetables. You'll notice that when the salads disappear.

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Submariners look forward to port calls not just for the liberty, but for fresh veggies and milk! In the old days, the milk would go next, replaced by powdered milk yuk! Submariners afraid of irradiated milk? The enlisted eat in the Crews Mess while the officers eat in the Wardroom.

The officers are seated by seniority, with the Captain on one end of a rectangular table that seats 12 and the Supply Officer on the other end.