Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : April 20th 2017 Contents life B27
Thursday, April 20, 2017 guardian.co.tt
Every submarine in the US fleet was designed
with the height, reach and strength of men in
mind, from the way valves are placed to how dis-
play screens are angled. That's going to change.
With women now serving aboard submarines,
defense contractor Electric Boat is designing
what will be the first Navy subs built specifically
to accommodate female crew members.
The designers are doing the obvious things, such as
adding more doors and washrooms to create separate
sleeping and bathing areas for men and women and
to give them more privacy. But they are also making
more subtle modifications that may not have been in
everyone's periscope when the Navy admitted women
into the Silent Service.
For example, they are lowering some overhead
valves and making them easier to turn, and installing
steps in front of the triple-high bunk beds and stacked
laundry machines. The first vessel built with some
of the new features is expected to be delivered to the
Navy in 2021, the future USS New Jersey.
The Navy lifted its ban on women on submarines in
2010, starting with officers. About 80 female officers
and roughly 50 enlisted women are now serving on
subs, and their numbers are expected to climb into
the hundreds over the next few years.
For now, the Navy is retrofitting existing subs with
extra doors and designated washrooms to accommo-
date women. But Electric Boat in Groton, Connecticut,
is at work on a redesign of the Navy's Virginia-class
fast-attack subs and is also developing a brand-new
class of ballistic-missile submarines, relying on body
measurements for both men and women.
"We have a clean sheet of paper, so from the ground
up, we'll optimise for both men and women," said
Brian Wilson, Electric Boat director of the new bal-
listic-missile sub programme.
Electric Boat officials had no immediate estimate
of how much the modifications will cost.
As anyone who watches war movies knows, subma-
riners are always turning valves, whether to operate
machinery, redistribute water between tanks or isolate
part of a system that has been damaged.
On the Columbia-class boats, valves will generally
be placed lower, Wilson said. Sometimes there will
be an extension handle, and some will be easier to
turn. Sailors will be able to connect their masks into
the emergency air system at the side of passageways,
instead of overhead.
Emergency air masks are being moved on fast-at-
tack submarines, too, but the bulk of the changes on
those subs are to ensure privacy.
Seats in the control room on the ballistic-missile
submarines will adjust forward a little more so every-
one can touch each display and reach every joystick.
Steps will be added so shorter people can climb into
the top bunk or see into the washers and dryers, since
clothes that get stuck in the machines are a fire hazard.
The first Columbia-class ballistic-missile sub is
scheduled to join the fleet in 2031.
At 5-foot-6, Lt Marquette Leveque, one of the first
women to serve on a submarine, said that she didn't
have any trouble reaching valves and other equipment
but that the ergonomic changes will be helpful for
Leveque was assigned to a compartment with two
other female officers on the USS Wyoming. They shared
a washroom with male officers. A sign on the door
could be flipped to show whether a man or woman was
using it. With so few women on board, the timesharing
worked, she said. But with more on the way, the need
for separate spaces is greater, she added. (AP)
In this May 16, 2012 file
photo, Petty Officer 3rd
Class DonPaul Mitchell,
left, assigned to the
USS Georgia, instructs
Ensign Tabitha Strobel,
propulsion assistant, in a
trainer at Naval
Submarine Base Kings
Bay in Georgia. With
women now serving on
submarines, future subs
are being built to
including height, reach
and strength. AP PHOTO
CENTRAL TENDERS BOARD
Supply and Delivery of One (1) Truck customized as a Mobile Emergency
Operations Centre to the San Juan/Laventille Regional Corporation,
Ministry of Rural Development and Local Government
Tenders are invited for the Supply and Delivery of One (1) Truck customized as a Mobile Emergency
Operations Centre to the San Juan/Laventille Regional Corporation, Ministry of Rural Development and Local
Any technical information can be obtained during normal working hours from
Tenders must be accompanied by valid:
Tenders in TRIPLICATE
"Tender for the Supply and Delivery of One (1) Truck customized as a Mobile Emergency
Operations Centre to the San Juan/Laventille Regional Corporation, Ministry of Rural
Development and Local Government"
and must be deposited in the BROWN
1.00 pm on Thursday May 11th , 2017.
Tenders will be opened shortly thereafter. The tenderer or an authorized representative may be present at
tenders should be packaged accordingly.
Late tenders will NOT be considered in any circumstances.
The Board does not bind itself to accept the lowest or any other tender.
The Central Tenders Board reserves the right to cancel the present notice in its entirety or partially, without
Central Tenders Board
CTB: 28/1/134 Vol. IX
April 06, 2017
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