Naval Post Graduate School Pushes USW Envelope by Barbara Honegger “The USW curriculum ensures that we fulfill our mission to increase the combat effectiveness of the Navy, while providing our students with a Master's Degree in engineering acoustics, physical oceanography, operations research, electrical engineering (acoustical signal processing), or applied science.“ Rear Adm. Patrick W. Dunne, USN President, Naval Postgraduate School

Investment in the education of Submarine Force officers has never been more important than it is today. FY05 presents a golden opportunity to afford some of the force leaders of tomorrow an opportunity for dedicated graduate study at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey. NPS is the primary path for dedicated, full-time study leading to both a master’s degree and a subspecialty code. At this year’s (2004) Executive Officer Screening Board, YG 93 officers with a master’s degree screened at a rate over 15 percent higher than those without, and one in three of those with master’s degrees earned them at the Naval Postgraduate School. NPS offers the best opportunity for relevant education and exposure in fields critically important to the future of our Navy. Attending NPS is a win-win scenario for an individual officer, his family, the Submarine Force, and the Navy. Take full advantage of this opportunity today.”

Adm. Kirkland H. Donald, Director, Naval Reactors;
Rear Adm. Admiral Paul F. Sullivan, Commander,
Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet


Photo caption follows
(above) (Left to right) Naval Postgraduate School undersea warfare students Lt. Scott Cullen, Lt. James Von St. Paul, and Lt. Joseph Moore. Submariner Cullen and surface warfare officer Von St. Paul are specializing in operations research, and submariner Moore is in applied physics.

(very top) Aerial view of the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) in Monterey, Calif.

Future naval battles in the littoral and defense of the Sea Base, carriers, and other high value assets may rely on mission-critical undersea warfare (USW) expertise gained by USW students at the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS).

Take NPS operations research student Lt. James Von St. Paul and his thesis research on an undersea “Star Wars,” for example: When the Applied Research Laboratory at Pennsylvania State University needed quick-turnaround research assistance on the first anti-torpedo torpedo, they turned to interdisciplinary USW faculty-student teams at NPS in Monterey, Calif.

Previously an ASW officer onboard the guided missile cruiser USS Antietam (CG-54) and a reactor mechanical division officer on USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71), Von St. Paul was tapped to assist with a mission identified by the Office of Naval Research. “I was able to bring all of my fleet experience as an ASW officer to the anti-torpedo torpedo project,” Von St. Paul said. “My thesis research was already focused on optimizing decisions for Tomahawk target matching, which had crossover applications to the torpedo targeting problem.” Von St. Paul’s master’s thesis research addresses one of the Chief of Naval Operations’ near-term ASW transformation priorities – torpedo countermeasures – directly.

Another USW student, submariner Lt. Joseph Moore, also found his NPS thesis research redirected to meet a pressing Department of Defense (DoD) need. “My main interest is in computer simulation for designing underwater shaped-charge warheads and constructing their prototypes – basically how to get more bang from the explosives,” said Moore, an applied physics degree candidate and former engineering department junior officer on USS Springfield (SSN-761). “When we learned that CENTCOM (U.S. Central Command) needed better ways to counter insurgent and terrorist threats in Iraq, I applied what I knew from my shaped-charge research to developing advanced lightweight armor to protect against improvised explosive devices (IEDs).”

Cover of Undersea Warfare Magazine Winter 2005