U.S. divers salvage Russian Sub

Discussion in 'OFF-Topic / Misc.' started by comiso90, Sep 5, 2007.

  1. comiso90

    comiso90 Active Member

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    Look at the photos!

    Photos of K-77: April 17-18, 2007



    PROVIDENCE, Rhode Island: Two dozen U.S. Army and Navy divers have been sent as part of a Department of Defense training project to help raise a sunken Russian submarine that had was once used as a Finnish bar and a Harrison Ford movie set before being turned into a floating museum.

    Military salvage teams began work a week ago at the Russian Sub Museum, which had drawn tens of thousands of tourists since it opened in 2002. It was moored in an industrial area of Providence and sank and rolled onto its side in April when it was swamped after a powerful storm known as a nor'easter.

    The crews are scheduled to work through Sept. 4 to stabilize and right the sub, said Warrant Officer Peter Sharpe of the U.S. Navy's Mobile Diving and Salvage Unit. Then, they'll come back in the spring and try to pump out the water, patch the sub and raise it from the river's bottom, he said.

    It is still not clear whether the sub will ever open as a museum again, said Frank Lennon, president of the foundation that runs the museum.

    "Until the sub is actually raised, we won't know the extent of the damage. All options are open," Lennon said. "If it's not salvageable or economically feasible, we could sell it."
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    The Juliet class diesel sub, alternately designated as K-77 or Juliett 484, is the only submarine of its kind in the United States. It launched in 1965 as part of the Soviet Northern Fleet and was used in the 1990s as a restaurant and vodka bar in Finland. It later served as a set for Harrison Ford movie "K-19: The Widowmaker" before being acquired by the USS Saratoga Foundation, a private, nonprofit group.

    The Juliett class was initially planned as a nuclear missile platform for strikes against the United States and carried four nuclear cruise missiles. Later, it began tracking U.S. aircraft carriers.

    The salvage crews are working courtesy of a defense department training program, called Innovative Readiness Training, which gives units from different branches of the military the opportunity to train together on projects that benefit communities.

    During the first part of the project, divers are staying outside the sub, surveying and monitoring, while crews at the surface attach four massive anchors to the ground, Sharpe said. They will try to stabilize the sub then gradually turn it upright.

    The second phase of the project is scheduled to start in May. During Phase Two, divers will go inside the sub, which has eight compartments on three decks. They plan to go first into the deepest part of the sub to pump it out, then work their way out.

    Phase One cost the Department of Defense about $1 million (€730,000), Sharp said, and he guessed Phase Two will cost about the same. But he said it was worth every penny for the training the crews will get. Experience like this comes in handy on more serious projects, he said, like the bridge collapse in Minneapolis, which the Mobile Diving and Salvage Unit responded to.

    "I've been in the military 26 years and never had the opportunity to salvage a submarine. The training value is priceless," Sharpe said.

    Before the salvage operation began, the museum used a combination of donations and insurance money to pay for civilian divers and other expenses, Lennon said.

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  2. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Very cool. Glad they were able to save her, and they got some good training out of it too.
     
  3. ccheese

    ccheese Member In Perpetuity
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    I just hope once they can get inside they will be able to completely salvage
    and return it to a museum. Adler's right, the training is worth the cost.

    Charles
     
  4. comiso90

    comiso90 Active Member

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    I was on the Scorpion in Long Beach, next to the Queen Mary.

    Very cool trip.

    Scorpion History Page

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