Helicopter to Land on USS NJ

by Press Release-Battleship New Jersey | Jun 26, 2005
Helicopter to Land on USS NJ The Battleship New Jersey will welcome the newest exhibit to its arsenal of tours on Tuesday, June 28th – a refurbished Kaman SH-2F Seasprite Helicopter. The helicopter, used by the US Navy from 1977 through 1993, will be an addition to the Battleship’s Firepower Tour and should be available for guests to view by July 2.

“The addition of the Seasprite furthers our goal of restoring the Battleship to the state it was when it was decommissioned for the final time in 1991,” said Scott Kodger, Vice-President of Curatorial and Educational Affairs for the Battleship New Jersey Museum and Memorial. “Guests touring the ship can walk up to and actually look inside this unique artifact. We are very pleased to have this restored Seasprite available for our guests to experience.”

On Tuesday, at approximately noon, a floating barge crane will lift the 53-foot long helicopter from a dock at the South Jersey Port Corporation and place it along the rear New Jersey side (starboard side) deck near the Battleship’s rear 16-inch gun turret. Guests visiting the ship on Tuesday are welcome to observe the Seasprite “in flight” from the Pier to the battleship’s main deck.

The Seasprite was used on the USS New Jersey for mid-course anti-ship missile guidance, anti-submarine warfare and gunnery spotting for the ship’s 16” guns. The NEW JERSEY’s assigned Seasprite – nicknamed “Sea Snake” – was used only during the battleship’s first lengthy 1983-84 deployment following its fourth and final reactivation in 1982. This deployment included operations off Lebanon at the time of the terrorist bombing of the U.S. Marine Barracks in Beirut. The battleship’s Seasprite helicopter was used over various areas of Beirut for reconnaissance and general intelligence gathering.

The Seasprite needed a crew of three (two pilots and one aircrew) and could carry up to eight fully-armed personnel. Its weapons systems included two ASW (anti-submarine warfare) torpedoes and a Mk. 11 depth charge. The helicopter utilized a unique blade flap design on the main rotors, which allowed pilots to fly without the aid of hydraulic assistance. It could fly as fast as 165 miles per hour at a range of 422 miles. The Seasprite was phased out of US Navy frontline service by 2000, but remains one of the primary ASW helicopters in most allied navies for deployment on cruisers and destroyers.

Located on the Camden Waterfront across the river from Center City Philadelphia the Battleship New Jersey Museum and Memorial offers guided and self-guided tours daily, beginning at 9 a.m. with the last tour departing at 5 p.m. In addition to daytime tours, families and youth groups can spend the night aboard the Battleship as part of the overnight encampment program. Guests experience dinner and breakfast served from the chow line in the crew’s mess, a tour of the ship, a ride on the 4D flight simulator and the opportunity to sleep in the bunks that the crew of the USS New Jersey once did. Special group packages and event/meeting space are available. For more information, call (856) 966-1652 or visit www.battleshipnewjersey.org.

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Author: Press Release-Battleship New Jersey


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