Thursday, May 24, 2007

Navy Technology

This is one in a series of posts on the history of the United States Navy.

The United States Navy has a long history of technological innovation. This technology has traditionally been used either to increase naval power projection or to make the lives of the servicemen and women safer.

An excellent example of the latter occurred on May 24, 1939, when the McCann-Momsen rescue chamber was used to successfully rescue 33 survivors from the submarine USS Squalus, which sank in 240 feet of water off the coast of New Hampshire.

The rescue chamber was devised by then-Lieutenant-Commander Allan McCann (1896-1978), based on an original design by then-Commander Charles Momsen (1896-1967), who also invented the Momsen Lung. McCann served under Momsen, who commanded the Squalus rescue operations. Both McCann and Momsen went on to serve with distinction in the Second World War, and retired with the ranks of Vice-Admiral.

The United States Navy and the American nation can be proud of Americans such as Momsen and McCann. I trust that their example will serve to inspire future Americans to uphold the traditions set by heroes such as these.

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