Test verifies CBR safety on San Antonio-class ships

The U.S. Navy announced on Thursday that the results from a simulated chemical attack verified the effectiveness of chemical, biological and radiological defense systems of San Antonio-class ships to protect sailors.

According to a report by the Defense Department Operational Test and Evaluation Force, the test was conducted aboard the USS New York off the coast of Virginia. The results demonstrate that San Antonio amphibious assault ships can operate in a chemical warfare environment protected by multiple CBR defense systems, including the Improved Point Detection System - Lifecycle Replacement technology.

"The report provides high level verification of the effectiveness of our collective protection system, IPDS-LR, countermeasure washdown, decontamination stations and casualty decontamination stations," Michael Pompeii, the Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren CBR Defense Division's chief engineer, said.

Pompeii's team assisted the Navy Operational Test and Evaluation Force to conduct test and evaluation requirements for the San Antonio Class.

"Every new class of ships that the Navy builds undergoes rigorous testing to validate that the operational requirements are met," Jay Stefany, the executive director of the Program Executive Office for Ships Amphibious and Auxiliary Sealift programs, said. "The CBR defense test on USS New York was the final major operational test event for the LPD 17 class, and we are very pleased with the performance of the CBR defense systems."

The IPDS-LR system effectively detected a simulated chemical weapon released by a helicopter at 300 feet. The crew was also able to launch two landing craft, air-cushioned vehicles in the simulation of the contaminated environment.

The Navy plans to install the system on aircraft carriers, large and small deck amphibious ships, dry cargo/ammunition ships, littoral combat ships, and guided-missile destroyers and cruisers by the end of 2018.

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