The U.S. Navy has announced that repairs to the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman are complete, and they are now working the carrier and its respective air wings back to sea from Naval Station Norfolk.

Back in August, the Navy pulled the monstrous ship from active duty in the Middle East in an unprecedented move to replace damaged components and complete tests to ensure its viability and that no further issues would arise. There was no specific information available on the problems that were located, resulting in the sidelining of the vessel, but engineering tests have confirmed that whatever the issues were have been resolved and the carrier is ready to return.

The issues that were present must have been relatively serious though, because the Navy did a full investigation of its nuclear-powered aircraft carriers and determined that the problem was not class-wide, and was only locally present on the USS Truman.

The USS Harry Truman leaves the Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Virginia.
The aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) departs the Norfolk Naval Shipyard to conduct sea trials in this July 7, 2012, photo. REUTERS/U.S. Navy/Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Kristina Young

A source with knowledge of the repairs told the International Business Times under the condition of anonymity that the issues related to the electrical system. The source refused to disclose any further information on the flaw and how the ship was affected, but added that extra precautions were taken to protect the ship and its crew.

The Nimitz-class nuclear-powered aircraft carrier is the size of a floating city, with a maximum crew component of 6,012 people. The carrier is capable of prolonged deployment and continuous operation.

A report by Defense Blog quoted Commander, Naval Sea Systems Command, Vice Admiral Thomas Moore, as saying: “Returning HST to full functionality was a team effort with a tremendous amount of work in collaboration by NAVSEA teams and our industry partners, shipyard workers and the crew of the HST to overcome a very challenging technical issue.”

The actual issue may never be known as the U.S. Navy is playing this one close to the vest as it does with all the problems on its nuclear-powered vessels. Still the issue must have been pretty serious to remove an entire carrier and its escort group off station during a deployment to an area like the Middle East.

With such an important and sophisticated piece of equipment missing from its arsenal, the U.S. Navy was forced to change up rotations for other carrier battle groups, including the USS Abraham Lincoln, which had to extend its sea time by an additional six months. Ships from the escort group of The Truman joined the Lincoln in the Middle East during the time.

With all of the issues resolved the Navy is working steadfastly to return the carrier and its aircraft to active status so that they can help with operations in their area of responsibility, which included the Middle East. With the area on the boil, it never hurts to have a full carrier battle group and its Air Wing present.