Someone commented about the AV-17 being involved in the Able/Baker atomic tests performed at the Bikini Atoll. She was not a “target” but played an important role in collecting data from the various tests because, unlike most ships, her seaplane deck was made of wood, not steel. Five years after leaving the Cuke, I joined the civilian staff of the U.S.Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, DC. One of the aims of the tests was to collect data closer to the tests than humans could manage. Test equipment was secured to the wooden deck by bolts. Live data was collected and telemetered to scientists stationed at a safer distance from the explosions. Later, the ship and equipment was “washed down” to remove excess radiation.
Paul “J” Dunn, former ETM 1/c
© Stephen Clay McGehee 2011 – 2017
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