Photo by Stefan Karpinski, taken in Middle East waters in 2003. Click to enlarge.
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Named after the the southernmost of two bright stars in the constellation Gemini, the SS POLLUX is the fourth ALGOL - class fast sealift ship and the fourth ship in the Navy to bear the name. Ships in that class are the world's fastest cargo ships. Originally built in the West Germany in 1973 as SS SEA-LAND MARKET for Sea-Land Services, Inc., Port Elizabeth, N.J., the ship was purchased by the Navy in 1981 and converted. The cargo hold was redesigned into a series of decks connected by ramps so that vehicles can now be driven in and out of storage areas for rapid loading and unloading. Four cranes were installed - twin cranes amidships capable of lifting 35 long tons and twin cranes aft capable of lifting 50 long tons. POLLUX, the last ship in her class to finish conversion, was delivered to the Military Sealift Command in 1986.
Since then, the POLLUX was involved in several operations including Desert Shield/Desert Storm (1990/91), Restore Hope (1992) and Operation Enduring Freedom (2001 - ). On October 1, 2007, the POLLUX was transferred to the MARAD. On October 1, 2008, the ship was transferred to the Ready Reserve Force and lost her USNS designation.
|General Characteristics:||Launched: May 1, 1973|
|Delivered to Sea-Land Services, Inc., Port Elizabeth, N.J.: September 1,1973|
|Purchased by the Navy: November 16, 1981|
|Conversion started: July 28, 1984|
|Delivered: March 31, 1986|
|Builder: A.G. Weser, Bremen, West Germany|
|Conversion yard: Avondale Shipyards, New Orleans, LA|
|Propulsion system: two Foster-Wheeler boilers, 875 psi (61.6kg/cm2); 9500F (5100C) and two GE MST-19 steam turbines; 120,000 hp (89.5 MW)|
|Length: 946.2 feet (288.4 meters)|
|Beam: 105.6 feet (32.2 meters)|
|Draft: 36.4 feet (11.1 meters)|
|Displacement: approx. 55,355 tons full load|
|Speed: 33 knots|
|Aircraft: helicopter landing area only|
|Capacity: more than 700 Army vehicles (including tanks, trucks, and helicopters)|
|Crew: 43 civilians, 12 military technicians (fully operational); 18 civilians (reduced operating status)|
|Homeport: Philadelphia, PA|
This section contains the names of sailors who served aboard SS POLLUX. It is no official listing but contains the names of sailors who submitted their information.
SS POLLUX Image Gallery: