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Something like this is most likely.
Starting in 1979 and through the early 80's, the US helped develop documents and standards to use with NATO Allied ships. HOSTAC was one such document that is very important for shipborne Helicopter operations.
HELICOPTER OPERATIONS FROM SHIPS OTHER THAN AIRCRAFT CARRIERS (HOSTAC) https://www.japcc.org/wp-content/uploads/MPP-02-VOL-I-EDH-V1-E.pdf
This document outlines standard markings, standard approaches and operating procedures as well as has supplements that indicate what helos are certified to operate from each ship class.
It's interesting to note that Iowa changed her flight deck about a year after reactivation and whisky and Mighty Mo were reactivated with the newer style.
I have no documentation that states the reason for the helipad marking change but this might be a possibilty.
A high school friend was stationed on this ship. When the New Jersey made her first cruise in 1983 she was sent to Lebanon for supporting the marines. There was an international peace keeping force present and helipad was used alot for meetings on the battleship.
He told me the crew nicknamed the helipad "New Jersey International". Perhaps the use of the helipad found a problem and the navy redesigned the markings for the helipad because of it.
it appears the pad is longer towards the stern compared to prior.
Prior to 1984 the helipad on the New Jersey looked like this:
Around 1984 it changed to this:
Does anyone know of documentation explaining this change?
My speculation from the position of the lines and lights is that the original markings were set up for an approach from the starboard side and that the later markings were set up for stern approach.
Is there any authoritative source?
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