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GUIDE

gilbert
Coast and Geodetic Survey Ship GUIDE. In service 1923-1941.
Pacific service

Steamer, length 187.8, beam 35.5 feet, draft 9.8 feet. Built by New Jersey Drydock and Transportation Company at Elizabethport, New Jersey in 1918 at a cost of $500,000. This vessel was acquired from the Navy in 1923 and was the ex USS FLAMINGO, AM-32, a Navy minesweeper that had served clearing mines of the North Sea barrage following the signing of the Armistice. It was known as one of the “bird boats” while attached to the Coast Survey. In company with the PIONEER it conducted many early bathymetric surveys on the West Coast. The radio acoustic ranging method of navigation was developed on this ship by Captain Robert Luce under the direction of Captain Nicholas Heck. In 1924 a sound signal was observed from 206 miles distant off the Oregon coast being the first observed indication of the sound layer that was later called the SOFAR channel. This vessel was commemorated by the naming of Guide Seamount on the California coast.



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Last Updated: June 8, 2006 9:24 AM

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