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Navy explosion test for new aircraft carrier registers as minor earthquake in Florida

The U.S. Navy released footage of an explosive test off Florida’s coast that aimed to determine the durability of a new aircraft carrier

The USS Gerald R. Ford sat 100 miles east of Florida as the Navy set off a 40,000-pound explosive – just one of several planned tests. The aircraft carrier is the newest and most advanced one in the Navy. 

The ship closed out a successful 18-month period of tests and trials in April, finishing ahead of schedule for all planned improvements and maintenance. 

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The explosion, set off on Friday, was so powerful that the U.S. Geological Survey measured a magnitude 3.9, the Orlando Sentinel reported

“The first-in-class aircraft carrier was designed using advanced computer modeling methods, testing, and analysis to ensure the ship is hardened to withstand battle conditions, and these shock trials provide data used in validating the shock hardness of the ship,” the Navy said in a press release

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The Navy conducts these Full Ship Shock Trials as the final stage before a ship deploys. 

The USS Theodore Roosevelt was the last aircraft carrier to execute the trials, back in 1987. 

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The Navy did not specify how many trials it would conduct during the FSSTs, but the trials will end later this summer. 

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