Aerial shot shows contracted vessels working on the dismantling of the USS Guardian off the Tubbataha Reef in the Sulu Sea, off the coast of the Philippines, March 12, 2013.
Anderson Bomjardim/U.S. Navy, Flickr
Photos Of The Week: The Navy's Wooden-Hulled Warships -- Killer Apps/Foreign Policy
Happy Friday. Here are your photos of the week. Bet you didn't realize that the U.S. Navy still has wooden-hulled warships? The photo above shows the USS Guardian trapped on a reef in the Pacific Ocean being scrapped. Notice how the ship's paint has been stripped away by waves revealing the wooden hull.
Why a wooden hull? The Guardian is an Avenger-class mine hunter, the same type of ship that the U.S. deployed eight of to the Persian Gulf when tensions ran high with Iran last summer. Wooden hulls give the ships an extra layer of protection against magnetic mines set up to explode when a large chunk of floating metal -- like a ship -- passes close by. Specifically, the hulls of the 14 Avenger-class ships are made from oak, Douglas fir, and Alaskan cedar, which, in addition to reducing the ships' magnetic signature, apparently helps them to better withstand the blast from a mine.
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Update: NAVSEA Assists with Dismantling of USS Guardian -- Military.com/Navy News
WNU Editor: There are more pics here.