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Explosion set off near new US Navy aircraft carrier in shock testing recorded as a magnitude 3.9 earthquake

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The U.S. Navy set off an explosion near its new aircraft carrier, USS Gerald R. Ford, off the U.S. east coast on Friday during shock testing, and the large explosion was recorded as an earthquake of magnitude 3.9, USNI News reported, citing data from the US Geological Survey.

The US government agency recorded the activity as an “ explosion” about 100 miles off the coast of Florida, where a Navy spokesperson confirmed to Insider that the Ford was undergoing crash tests.

Shock tests test a ship’s ability to withstand brutal combat conditions, particularly the detonation of nearby munitions. By triggering controlled explosions near Navy ships, the Navy can identify critical vulnerabilities related to shocks.

The Navy has released video footage of the explosive shock testing from different angles. Navy video, which appears to have been taken aboard the Ford, shows the intensity of the nearby explosion.

The USS Gerald R. Ford, a first-class ship and the Navy’s most advanced aircraft carrier, was “designed using advanced computer modeling methods, testing and analysis to ensure that the ship is hardened to withstand combat conditions, and these crash tests provide data used to validate the ship’s impact resistance, ”the service said.

Commenting on the results of the first explosive event, posts on Ford’s official social media pages said that “the management and crew have demonstrated that the Navy is ready to withstand shock, proving our warship can ‘take un coup ”and continue our mission at the cutting edge of technology. of naval aviation. “

The Navy explained in a Facebook post about the tests that it is “doing crash testing of new ship designs using real explosives to confirm that our warships can continue to meet demanding mission requirements in the harsh conditions. that they might encounter in combat “.

The shock tests were born from observations during World War II, according to a study sponsored by the Navy in 2007.

During the war, the Navy discovered that although “near miss” explosions did not seriously damage the hull or superstructure of ships, the shock of the explosion would damage the key system and cripple ships.

In response, the study explained, the Navy created a “rigorous impact hardening test procedure” known as impact testing.

The latest crash tests involving the Ford are the first aircraft carrier tests since those involving the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt in 1987.

The Navy said the testing is being conducted in a manner that “complies with environmental mitigation requirements, respecting known migration patterns of marine life in the testing area.”

The service also said that it “has also used extended protocols throughout [full-ship shock trials] to ensure the safety of military and civilian personnel participating in the development of testing. “

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