Technical difficulties happen on land - and at sea. Blogger Sara has been having some trouble getting her blogs and photographs to us. If you've been asking yourself, "Where are Sara's blogs?", you're not alone! Her many fans want to hear from her! Thanks to the IT department aboard the TS Kennedy who will be getting things repaired today!
One question I had while coming on the ship, was, “How do they dispose of waste water?” To find my answer, I headed down to the engine room where 1/C Mitchell Miskell helped me understand. There is a piece of equipment crucial to the success of ship’s everywhere to prevent pollution. This equipment is called the Oily-Water Separator or OWS system. The sole purpose of the OWS is to do exactly as the name says, separate oil from water about to be discharged overboard. Inside the OWS, there are both hydrophobic and oleophilic beads that are called a coalescing medium.
hydrophobic: tending to repel or fail to mix with water.
oleophilic: a substance that has an affinity for oils and not for water
This means that they take the beads of oil and groups them together into large clumps. The clumps then float to the top of the tank where they can be pumped out into a slop tank to be discharged in port. Clean water goes through an oil detection system that screens the water for clarity and is required by law to be no more than 15 part per million (PPM). That means if you have 1,000,000 drops of water, only 15 can contain traces of oil. The oil detection system searches the water for any trace of oil and if there is more than the legal limit found, the system will recirculate the water back through the OWS until the standard is met. When the 15 PPM standard is met, the water can be discharged overboard.
Per order of the United States Coast Guard, a logbook must be kept to record the start time of the OWS, latitude and longitude of use, and the operator’s signature. On the Kennedy, the Second Engineer operates the OWS and is usually the individual to sign the logbook. Improper discharge or recordkeeping can get a ship’s officers to lose their licenses so the Kennedy takes this aspect of the engine room very serious.
Here's are two brief videos that explain the OWS process.
Plan of the Day, POD
Without internet and constant means of communication, there is a need for an efficient way to distribute information to cadets and crew onboard. To combat this, the COMCAD office produces what is called a “Plan Of The Day”. This daily bulletin can be compared to a school agenda. It includes the day’s schedule, general announcements, the rotation schedule for cadets, and any safety related information. The COMCAD assistants post the POD in various locations around the ship. Cadets are responsible for looking at the POD for important information like the uniform of the day.
Time Change With A Twist
The POD for tomorrow says that we will be moving the clocks forward an hour to meet up with Puerto Rico’s time change. You can imagine the look of disappointment when cadets read that they were to lose an hour of precious sleep. Since we are not yet in Puerto Rico, the time change will happen in increments of 20 minutes. The reason for the slow change is because watches are still continuing and no one watch wants to stand an extra hour. The clocks will start changing at 2200, again at 0200, and one final time at 0400. The Kennedy only changes time zones when we travel East to West or vice versa. We never change times going from North to South or South to North due to the Earth’s rotation. Hopefully everyone remembers to set their alarms to the correct time!