Call Me Steely Blue[Crossposted from Unconsidered Trifles]
Actually, I have the wrong song in mind! Given that the new hue is called "Steely Blue" (yes, I'm aware of the internal rhyme of that last line) perhaps we need a hit by the jazz rock band Steely Dan ....hmmm, "Deacon Blues" comes to mind!Submarines are being given a makeover by the Royal Navy and repainted blue.Navy bosses have decided to replace the traditional black to make the fleet harder to spot. The first submarine to get a facelift, HMS Torbay, has already been restyled in blue and the rest of the fleet should will soon follow.
I joke, but actually, I think this is seriously a thoughtful move--not some defense contractor scam. It is reported that:
Terry Goodship, 71, of Gosport, chairman of the Submariners' International Association , said the move was unsurprising. He said: 'All submarines in the Med used to be blue. 'Blue is a good colour and is hard to spot. It is only in the very dark waters that we need to have the submarines painted black.' The end of the Cold War means British subs spend less time in the Atlantic. More time in the hotter areas of the world, such as the Middle East and Indian Ocean, means the fleet needs to adapt to brighter waters.reports that:
Navy boffins picked the colour after exhaustive trials and lab tests. They also discovered black was the WORST low-key colour to deceive an enemy.As unmanly as it might strike us at first, perhaps we submariners--known for our innovativeness--need to take a page from our USMC
Lieutenant Commander Steve White, in charge of the change, said: "This should make subs twice as hard to spot.
"It may not look as macho as dark black, but when sailors realise what it does they'll love it."
Oh, and apparently, there is still testing to be done "in the field" (as it were):
HMS Torbay has left Devonport, Plymouth, on a secret six-month mission during which her new colour will undergo visual tests from the air, land and sea.
And Admirals have challenged holidaying Sun readers to spot the hunter-killer sub anywhere in the world and then tell them if they think the colour works.