Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) and Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 9 successfully completed flight deck certification Dec. 12 in the Pacific Ocean, after a 16-month Docking Planned Incremental Availability period.
Representatives from each CVW9 squadron embarked Stennis Dec. 5 to perform aircraft launch and recovery operations over the course of three days.
Flight deck certification started about 120 days before this underway, said Lt. j.g. Mark Rodriguez, Stennis’ flight deck officer:
We have to be certified to launch and recover aircraft by the commander of Naval Air Forces handling team prior to conducting flight operations.
The certification was the first time Stennis and CVW9 have operated together since deploying in 2013.
For many of Stennis’ and CVW9’s personnel, this underway was their first time to see flight operations.
Stennis and CVW9 performed 160 launch and recoveries during day and night operations throughout the certification process.
Completing flight deck qualifications brings Stennis one step closer to becoming fully combat ready.
Press release, Image: US Navy