Halter Marine Christens Second Of Two Navy Survey Ships

Halter Marine, Inc., part of the Trinity Marine Group and a subsidiary of Trinity Industries, Inc., recently christened and launched the USNS Littlehales (T-AGS-52).

The hydrographic survey ship is the second of two sister ships under construction at Halter for the Navy in a $25 million contract. When completed, both ships will be operated by the Navy's Military Sealift Command for the Naval Oceanography Command whose members conduct the surveys.

The vessel is named in honor of George Washington Littlehales, who was an authority in the fields of magnetics, hydrography, oceanography and cartography, serving in the U.S. Hydrographic Office from 1885 to 1932.

Principal speaker at the ceremony was Rep. Gene Taylor of Mississippi's Fifth Congressional District.

The traditional bottle of champagne was broken on the ship's bow by Mrs. Lottchen V. Shivers, granddaughter of Mr. Littlehales.

Her daughter, Lottchen G.

Shivers, was the maid of honor.

The new ship is 208 feet in length, with a 45-foot beam and 22-1/2-foot depth. When completed, she will carry two 34-foot hydrographic survey launches and will be operated by a crew of 22 MSC personnel. This is in addition to an 11-member scientist/survey party.

Littlehales will collect hydrographic data in water depths from 10 to 4,000 meters using hull mounted and towed sonars.

The Navy has the responsibility to collect all hydrographic data outside the U.S. territorial waters. Data gathered on the survey missions undergoes initial processing at the Naval Oceanographic Office at the Stennis Space Center in Mississippi, before being turned over to the Defense Mapping Agency. There the data is used to prepare nautical charts for the armed forces and commercial interests.

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Maritime Reporter Magazine, page 8,  Apr 1991

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