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ASR 21 Pigeon  

ASR 21 Pigeon class vehicles serve as surface support ships for deep submergence rescue vehicles (DSRV's) during submarine rescue operations. They conduct these operations using the McCann rescue chamber, and also support deep sea diving operations. These ships can transport, service, lower and raise two Deep Submergence Rescue Vehicles and support diving operations to depths of 850 feet. They can support divers indefinitely, lowering them to the ocean floor in pressurized transfer chambers for open-sea work periods. These vessels also serve as operational control ships to conduct deep-sea salvage operations. No new ASRs are included in the Navy's long range shipbuilding plans.

The two Pigeon class ships are the first in the world to be built specifically for the submarine rescue mission and, except for one Military Sealift Command ship, are the first catamaran hull ships built for the Navy since Robert Fulton's Demologos in 1812.



Builder Alabama Drydock and Shipbuilding
Power Plant Four diesels, two shafts
Length Overall Length: 251 ft
Waterline Length: 230 ft
Beam 86 feet
Draft Maximum Navigational Draft: 26 ft
Draft Limit: 26 ft
Displacement Light Displacement: 4119 tons
Full Displacement: 4954 tons
Dead Weight: 835 tons
Speed 15 knots
Crew Ship's Company, 240;
submersible operations, 24
Aircraft none / helipad for landing


Name Number Builder Homeport Ordered Commissioned Decommissioned
Pigeon ASR-21 Alabama DD & SB San Diego 15 Nov 1967 28 Apr 1973 31 Aug 1992
Ortolan ASR-22 Alabama DD & SB Norfolk 15 Nov 1967 14 Jul 1973 30 Mar 1995

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