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USNS Hayes (AGOR 16) on 7 July 1971.
Click on this photograph for links to larger images of this class.

Class: HAYES (AGOR 16)
Design: SCB Project No. 726.67
Displacement (tons): 2,329 light, 4,521 full
Dimensions (feet): 246' oa, 224' wl x 75' e/wl (each hull 24’) x 22' max nav, 20' lim
Armament: none
Accommodations: 11 officers, 33unlicensed, 25 scientists
Speed (kts.): 15
Propulsion (HP): 5,400 (2,700 in each hull)
Machinery: Geared diesels, 2 screws

Construction:
AGORNameOrdBuilderKeelLaunchSvc
16HAYES10 Dec 1968Todd, Seattle12 Nov 19692 Jul 197021 Jul 1971

Disposition:
AGORNameTInactStrikeDisposalFateMA Sale
16HAYEST3 Dec 20081 Oct 2008Navy sale2021--

Class Notes:
The Fiscal Year 1967 program contained one new AGOR. The Navy's publicity pamphlet dated 15 June 1966 for the FY 1967 program described her as a medium size AGOR, the first of her class, that would provided accommodations and work space for 30 oceanographic scientists. The artwork in the pamphlet showed a conventional vessel similar to the two medium size surveying ships in the FY 1967 program, AGS 33 and 34. However the considerations that had led the Navy to redesign the two AGORs of the FY 1966 program appear to have been applied even more radically to the FY 1967 ship, which emerged as a much enlarged vessel with a catamaran hull. Approved characteristics for Oceanographic Research Ship (T-AGOR), SCB Project No. 726.67, were promulgated on 15 March 1967 with a final change on 6 August 1969. The preliminary designs for both the AGOR 14 and 16 classes were produced by M. Rosenblatt & Son, who completed the guidance plans, contract drawings, and specifications for AGOR 16 on 22 March 1968. Preliminary acceptance trials occurred on 7 July 1971 and she was then operated by MSTS for the Naval Research Laboratory.

The catamaran configuration gave HAYES large laboratory and open deck areas for scientific and project equipment, a center well for lowering and raising large and/or heavy objects, and a great degree of stability. Past experiences of NRL with wells in HUNTING, a converted LSM, MIZAR, a converted cargo ship, and MISSION CAPISTRANO, a converted tanker, all showed the advantages of wells located near the center of pitch and roll for suspending arrays and for towing operations. The "well" on the Hayes consisted of a non-tight cover over an opening in the deck amidships between the hulls and was open fore and aft. The ship was named for Dr. Harvey C. Hayes, a pioneer in underwater acoustics and the former head of the US Navy Sound Division of the Naval Research Laboratory. As an AGOR she was specially designed to conduct acoustic research for anti-submarine warfare.

Operating experience with the Navy's first oceangoing catamaran during her first winter of operation in the North Atlantic revealed that relatively large bow motion resulted in cross-structure slamming. A pitch- and heave-damping hydrofoil was installed forward, reducing this slamming and also reducing roll and corkscrew motion, thus significantly improving the general seakindliness of the ship. By 1974 she was judged to be an effective and efficient oceanographic research ship.

HAYES was laid up as an AGOR in 1983. She was placed on special duty in February 1987 for conversion to an acoustic research ship, and was reclassified AG 195 as such on 20 Mar 1989. She returned to service on 19 Jun 1992 with multiple changes including thinner stacks and a large new structure amidships over the well. She was retired in 2008.

Ship Notes:
AGORNameMANotes
16HAYESFY 1967. To Com 13 from builder 21 Jul 1971, to MSTS from Com 13 on 13 Aug 1971. Departed Philadelphia NISMF for scrapping at Brownsville, TX, on 16 December 2021.

Page Notes:
Compiled: 19 Oct 2021
© Stephen S. Roberts, 2021