Seabees Inspect Saipan Substation

From Naval Facilities Expeditionary Logistics Center Public Affairs

Steelworker 1st Class(SCW) Shawn Herr checks components after re-energizing the substation. Photo by Construction Mechanic 1st Class(SCW/PJ) Jason Duncan

Seabee Mobile Utilities Support Equipment (MUSE) technicians stationed on Naval Base Ventura County, Port Hueneme, Calif., completed an annual mobile substation inspection mission in Saipan, May 19.

Construction Mechanic 1st Class(SCW/PJ) Jason Duncan and Steelworker 1st Class(SCW) Shawn Herr returned from a week-long mission where they inspected a 1500-kVA mobile substation. The MUSE substation is located at the Port of Saipan and provides critical power for cold iron support to Los Angeles-class attack submarines from Submarine Group Seven (SUBGRU7).

“The main mission in Saipan is to support SUBGRU7 with an annual inspection consisting of hands-on electrical testing and evaluation of contracted equipment supporting pier operations for deployed U.S. Navy submarines,” said CM1 Duncan. “This particular mission aids the Navy by evaluating isolated support areas and providing SUBGRU7 with a detailed report of equipment condition, especially in areas such as this, where the customer is thousands of miles away. Missions of this nature are vital to global operations and I’m glad to be a part of it.”

Seabee MUSE power gives submarine crews the ability to shut down their propulsion units and perform ship maintenance by allowing electricity to come from an outside source, giving on-board personnel time to concentrate on maintenance in other areas.

The Seabees used transformer winding resistance testers that measure high resistance which could cause a potential failure to determine the substation’s reliability and life expectancy. This information provides the supported command (SUBGRU7) a snapshot of the equipment’s condition after exposure to elements, such as tropical storms, tidal surges and humidity. They also performed operational testing that included energizing the transformer to ensure proper operations.

“The mission was successfully completed without any issues,” Duncan said. “We’ll take our findings and report back to MUSE headquarters and SUBGRU7.”

Steelworker 1st Class(SCW) Shawn Herr safely checks a Port of Saipan 1500-kVA mobile substation with a high voltage detector. Photo by Construction Mechanic 1st Class(SCW/PJ) Jason Duncan

What is MUSE? All members of MUSE are selected from Seabee rates (Construction Electrician, Construction Mechanic, Steelworker, Engineering Aide and Builder) to attend the Army Prime Power School, Fort Leonard Wood, Mo. This is a year-long school dedicated to learning about power production and transformation. MUSE technicians serve a variety of customers throughout the Navy and DoD. Their specialty is filling short-term utility shortfalls, whether power production (Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti; Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, etc.) or power transformation. Questions? Contact the MUSE quarterdeck at 805-982-5323 or visit the MUSE website: https://portal.navfac.navy.mil/portal/page/portal/navfac/navfac_ww_pp/navfac_nfelc_pp/muse.


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