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Metallurgist Says She Faked Steel-Test Results for Navy Submarines

Metallurgist Says She Faked Steel-Test Results for Navy Submarines

Meanwhile, Kamala Harris on “charm offensive” in Paris tour to smooth over cracks torpedoing nation’s submarine deal with Australia.

navy.mil photo - https://www.navy.mil/management/photodb/webphoto/web_150609-O-ZZ999-110.JPG

Reports are now surfacing that a metallurgist has admitted to faking steel-test results for US Navy submarines.

A metallurgist in Washington state pleaded guilty to fraud Monday after she spent decades faking the results of strength tests on steel that was being used to make U.S. Navy submarines.

Elaine Marie Thomas, 67, of Auburn, Washington, was the director of metallurgy at a foundry in Tacoma that supplied steel castings used by Navy contractors Electric Boat and Newport News Shipbuilding to make submarine hulls.

From 1985 through 2017, Thomas falsified the results of strength and toughness tests for at least 240 productions of steel — about half the steel the foundry produced for the Navy, according to her plea agreement, filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Tacoma. The tests were intended to show that the steel would not fail in a collision or in certain “wartime scenarios,” the Justice Department said.

Fortunately for our brave servicemen and women, there are no allegations that any submarine hulls failed. However, authorities said the Navy had incurred increased costs and maintenance to ensure they remain seaworthy.

The reason for the faked data? Thomas thought the required tests were “stupid.”

When confronted with the falsified results, Ms Thomas suggested that in some cases she gave metal positive results because she thought it was “stupid” that the Navy required the tests to be conducted at -100F (-70C), the Associated Press reports.

John Carpenter, a lawyer for Ms Thomas, said in a statement filed in federal court on Monday that she “took shortcuts and made material misrepresentations.”

“Ms Thomas never intended to compromise the integrity of any material and is gratified that the government’s testing does not suggest that the structural integrity of any submarine was in fact compromised,” he said.

Thomas, who will be sentenced in February, faces up to 10 years in prison and a $1 million fine.

Since I am on the subject of subs, Legal Insurrection readers may recall that France recalled its ambassador to the US because the Biden Administration torpedoed a French submarine deal with Australia.

Brace yourselves for more tensions with that nation: Kamala Harris is on the way to Paris, on a “charm offensive” to cool French anger.

‘It is good to be in France and I am looking forward to many many days of productive discussions reinforcing the strength of our relationship,’ she dodged, remaining unresponsive with a question on how she will ‘ease tensions’ with the French president.

Harris’ four-day trip to Paris is a charm offensive aimed at Macron after President Joe Biden ‘s ‘clumsy’ handling of the row over the new US-British submarine deal with Australia.

Many on social media share my concerns about Harris.

I worry that there will be less charm and more offensive.

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Comments

I find it interesting that in every single story there is not a single picture of this woman.

Shows the regard of these people for our navy.

Another example of ‘standards are not important’ mindset. This woman substituted her ideology in place of the contract specifications. She decided to play philosopher king with people’s lives. Rule by experts and a detached bureaucracy/managerial class always comes to this point. This neo clerisy needs to be pulled out root and branch then thrown into a pile, lit on fire and the ashes scattered over the fields. It would be a more productive use of fertilizer than the BS lies they tell.

    henrybowman in reply to CommoChief. | November 10, 2021 at 2:16 pm

    “she thought it was “stupid” that the Navy required the tests to be conducted at -100F (-70C)”

    Auburn, Washigton, eh?
    Where I live, those tests would have required air conditioning.
    If they sentence her, maybe they could make her serve her time in the historic Yuma prison.
    (The historic prison out my way is a tree, and detainees get to enjoy the full Arizona sun.)

      henrybowman in reply to henrybowman. | November 10, 2021 at 8:39 pm

      Oh, my error! Missed the negative signs entirely.
      Brain must have thought they were punctuation or something.
      It’s OK, I’m safely retired now.

      The_Mew_Cat in reply to henrybowman. | November 11, 2021 at 8:15 am

      I’m sure the Navy had a good scientific reason to do cryogenic tests. Low temperatures are able to reveal flaws in the steel that would be masked at ordinary temperatures.

    diver64 in reply to CommoChief. | November 10, 2021 at 3:55 pm

    #heelsupharris will “ease the tension” the same way she did for Willie Brown.
    The military often has strange standards way above and beyond common sense like -100 water but they have a purpose. If your down 1,000 ft in a boomer under arctic ice a large margin of safety is a good thing to have. That chick should rot on a prison for being so cavalier with our men and women in uniforms lived

Yes. When Kamala is trying to be charming, I would call it offensive, too. (rimshot!) My question is, why are we punishing the French so much lately?

Do they really expect Harris to charm the French? Unless she wants to use her one talent, spreading her legs, I don’t think she’ll find much success.

This was not uncommon in the nuclear power industry 30 or so years ago … falsified tests, no material traceability, forged signatures, coverups … not just for steel but for concrete as well. When I was in the industry I saw plants shuttered because of it.

She “thought “the tests were stupid but never put anything in writing.

Thomas thought the required tests were “stupid.”
This…. This makes me want to hurt someone….

Look, I only do software test. And to a great extent I determine what tests are ‘stupid’ or not. (I’ve been on both sides – gov’t support and the provider.) But if there is a standard set by the contract or by mil-spec* for testing, I DO it. And I’m smart enough to do Chesterton’s Fence analysis on those standards. There must be a reason someone insisted on that.

If you want to second-guess those requirements, fine. But you do the d*mn tests.

As a tester, I want her drawn and quartered.
As a veteran with sea time, I want her kept alive and burned at the stake afterwards.

    GWB in reply to GWB. | November 10, 2021 at 2:33 pm

    Forgot my *….
    I’m using “mil-spec” very broadly. And, in my case, it includes a lot of cybersecurity stuff. I get push back on “but that’s not how the user should be using it” and such. And I always come back with “If I thought of it, I guarantee the dumb user will come up with something even goofier and will do it. So, we test for it.”

Whet is the punishment for sabotage?

The reason for testing and analysis at extremes is to add in additional factors of safety. Has a submarine ever surfaced in a polar region where the air temperature was -100F? Probably not. But it is possible that there are flaws so small as to be undetectable in a forging or casting. The thinking might be that if the test specimen passed the test, then a real component could better resist a flaw, an embedded crack, that could grow and fail the component at more reasonable temperatures under loads.
I would rather be in a sub where the forgings/castings met an ‘unreasonable’ criteria just as I would prefer never to fly in a plane where substandard or unverified fasteners held it together.
ps – I’d rather not be a sub at all – I’m claustrophobic.

Not only did she commit fraud, but theft as well. The U.S. Navy paid for those tests to be done, and by not doing them, she defrauded the American taxpayer.

Now, we know that ocean water, regardless of depth doesn’t reach much below 0 degrees Celsius, so a test at -70C is not indicative of the environment the sub will operate at.

But it is a material property test, and testing at extreme temperatures ensures that the material properties of the base metal meet specifications.

How angry France must be! Now they know we think so little of them that we’re willing to send over a non-entity like Kamala Harris to “charm” them.

Maybe the quality and cost of material instead of demographics of the foundry owners should become the priority for the U.S. military and perhaps the people responsible for making diversity a factor in which foundries the U.S. Navy patronizes should retire?

Women shouldn’t be allowed to vote.

BREAKING NEWS

Kamala Harris caught on tape speaking in fake French accent during meeting in France.

Where are all the SJWs with their accusations of cultural appropriation?

This scientist placed our sailors in harms’way. She should suffer the consequences.

“Kamala and Offensive in the same sentence.” yup, nail hit squarely.

But, but, but believe the scientists!! Or is that scientismists.

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