ROTA, Spain (NNS) -- Seabees from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 11 turned over a state-of-the-art Shipboard Electronic Systems Evaluation Facility (SESEF) to Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Europe, Africa, and Southwest Asia at Naval Station Rota, Spain, Jan. 5.
Rota's SESEF is one of seven land-based facilities used to facilitate testing of ship's electromagnetic transmitting and receiving equipment for Navy, Coast Guard, Military Sealift Command activities, and allied foreign navies.
This facility will allow naval vessels to calibrate their equipment in Rota instead of transiting the Atlantic back to the nearest SESEF located in Norfolk; enhancing fleet operational readiness and capability.
"Having access to a SESEF here in theater provides the fleet with a critically important resource for our forward-deployed destroyers, the 6th Fleet flagship, and any Navy ships arriving in theater from the United States," said Capt. Tate Westbrook, commodore, Destroyer Squadron 60 and Commander, Task Force 65.
"We are now able to calibrate and verify components of our ships' combat systems with the added flexibility of doing it just outside of Rota," said Westbrook. "This results in improved mission readiness and more time on station -- big win for forward-deployed Naval Forces Europe."
Initial construction efforts began in September 2014, it took over 2,800 man-days to complete, and cost roughly $1.4 million in materials and support contracts. Over the last three years, all three Gulfport-based NMBCs contributed to the construction efforts, but NMCB 11 had the distinct pleasure of guiding the project to completion by overseeing the execution of remaining construction efforts and turning over the final product to NAVFAC.
Temporary contingency construction has been the main focus of the Naval Construction Force over the last 10 years, but the completion of the SESEF demonstrates the full range of Seabee capabilities and proves why Seabees are a premier construction force.
"SESEF was a rare Seabee project that offered great learning experiences in project management and in-rate skill practice, as well as learning new methods of construction," said Builder 2nd Class Jeffrey Jutz, NMCB 11's project supervisor. "It is really humbling to know this is only the seventh operational building of its kind worldwide, the unique mission it is supporting, and that I had a part in it."
NMCB 11 is currently deployed supporting five combatant and component commanders to provide contingency construction, disaster relief, and humanitarian assistance worldwide.
The Naval Construction Force is a vital component of the U.S. Maritime Strategy. The NCF provides deployable units capable of providing general construction, contingency construction, disaster preparation and recovery support, humanitarian assistance, and combat operations support.
U.S. 6th Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied, joint, and interagency partners in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.
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For more news from Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe and Africa/U.S. 6th Fleet, visit www.navy.mil/local/naveur/.