U.S. Navy’s R/V Atlantis research ship supports Argentine submarine search

An oceanographic research ship under charter with the U.S. Navy’s Office of Naval Research (ONR), R/V Atlantis is deployed to support the search of the missing Argentine Navy submarine. ARA San Juan.

The U.S. Navy told the vessel’s operator, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) to divert the ship from a planned oceanographic mission in the south Atlantic to help search for the missing submarine, the institution said in a statement.

The ship brings advanced precision navigation, seafloor mapping sonar and satellite communications (SATCOM) to the effort.

The Atlantis started aiding search operations, using multi-beam sonar (Multibeam echosounder) and underwater communications systems, around 2 p.m. Nov. 21.

R/V Atlantis (T-AGOR-25)

R/V Atlantis is an oceanographic research vessel operated by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) as part of the University-National Oceanographic Laboratory System (UNOLS) fleet.

She is the host vessel of Deep Submergence Vehicle Alvin (DSV-2), a manned deep-ocean research submersible owned by the U.S. Navy and operated by the WHOI. The ship’s three winches, three cranes, machine shop, and specialized hangars were specifically designed to support Alvin and other vehicles of the National Deep Submergence Facility.

The ship carries a complement of 36 crew members, science technicians, deep submergence group members, as well as a scientific party of 24 men and women for as long as 60 days.

Atlantis is named for the first research vessel operated by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, R/V Atlantis for which the Space Shuttle Atlantis is also named.

Atlantis was built by Halter Marine Inc., Gulfport, Mississippi. She was laid down in August 1994 and launched in February 1996. She was delivered to the U.S. Navy on 25 February 1998, as R/V Atlantis (T-AGOR-25) a Thomas G. Thompson-class oceanographic research ship.

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