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NOAAS John N. Cobb (R 552)

NOAAS John N. Cobb
NOAA Ship John N. Cobb
John N. Cobb (R 552)
United States Fish and Wildlife Service
Name: FWS John N. Cobb (FWS 1601)
Namesake: John N. Cobb (1868-1930), American fisheries researcher and first dean of the University of Washington College of Fisheries
Builder: Western Boatbuilding Company, Tacoma, Washington
Launched: 16 January 1950
Commissioned: 18 February 1950
Fate: Transferred to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 3 October 1970
Notes: Operated by Fish and Wildlife Service‍ '​s Bureau of Commercial Fisheries 1956-1970
United States
Name: NOAAS John N. Cobb (R 552)
Namesake: Previous name retained
Acquired: Transferred from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service 3 October 1970
Decommissioned: 13 August 2008
Homeport: Seattle, Washington
Fate: Preserved 2009
General characteristics
Type: Fisheries research ship
Displacement: 250 tons (full load)
Length: 93 ft (28 m)
Beam: 26 ft (7.9 m)
Draft: 10 ft 10 in (3.30 m)
Installed power: 325 bhp (242 kW)
Propulsion: Fairbanks-Morse diesel engine, 1 shaft, 25 tons fuel
Speed: 9.3 knots (17.2 km/h; 10.7 mph) (sustained)
Range: 2,900 nmi (5,400 km; 3,300 mi) at 9.3 knots (17 km/h; 11 mph)
Endurance: 13 days
Boats & landing
craft carried:
1 × fiberglass utility boat
Complement: 10 (2 NOAA Corps officers, 2 licensed engineers, and 4 other crew members) plus up to 4 scientists[1]
Notes: 60 kilowatts electrical power
John N. Cobb (fisheries research vessel)
Governing body NOAA NW Regional Office
NRHP Reference # 09000047
Added to NRHP February 11, 2009

NOAA Ship John N. Cobb (R 552) was a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration research vessel. She was built at Western Boatbuilding Company in Tacoma, Washington. She was launched on January 16, 1950 and placed in service on February 18, 1950, by the Fish and Wildlife Service. When NOAA was established in 1970, she became a part of its fleet.

She had a wooden hull and a total of 13 bunk spaces. The mess room could serve eight for meals. She carried a complement of two NOAA Corps officers, two licensed engineers, and four other crew members, and could accommodate up to four scientists.

The deck equipment featured three winches and one boom crane. This equipment gave John N. Cobb a lifting capacity of up to 4,800 pounds (2,200 kg) as well as 7,200 feet (2,200 m) of cable that could pull up to 14,000 pounds (6,400 kg).

In support of her primary mission of fishery and living marine resource research for the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) division of NOAA, John N. Cobb was equipped with a shallow-water echo sounder, a fishfinder, forward-looking sonar, and netsonde. She had a single laboratory of 150 square feet (14 m2). She carried a 17-foot (5.2 m) fiberglass boat for utility and rescue purposes. She could conduct bottom trawls down to depths of over 300 fathoms (1,800 ft; 550 m).

With her home port at NOAA's Marine Operations Center-Pacific (MOC-P) in Seattle, Washington, and operated by NOAA's Office of Marine and Aviation Operations, John N. Cobb conducted research off southeastern Alaska and the Pacific Northwest of the United States. She supported research of the NMFS Auke Bay Laboratory in Juneau, Alaska, collecting fish and crustacean specimens using trawls and benthic longlines; and fish larvae, fish eggs, and plankton using plankton nets and surface and mid-water larval nets. Scientists from the National Marine Mammal Laboratory in Seattle also conducted surveys of whales, porpoise, and seals while aboard John N. Cobb.

John N. Cobb‍ '​s 50th anniversary in the fleets of NOAA and its predecessors was celebrated in 2000, and she was the oldest NOAA ship when she was finally placed out of service on August 13, 2008.

John N. Cobb was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on February 11, 2009. She is located at the NOAA NW Regional Office, 7600 Sand Point Way NE., Seattle, Washington.[2]


  1. ^ Combat Fleets of the World 1990/1991, p. 917, claims her complement was 8 (4 civilian officers and 4 other crew members) plus up to 4 scientists.
  2. ^ "Weekly List". February 20, 2009. Retrieved 2009-02-20. 
  • "John N. Cobb"National Register of Historic Places Registration Form / RV (pdf). 12 November 2008. Retrieved 2012-09-03. 
    • "Accompanying Photos" (pdf). 12 November 2008. Retrieved 2012-09-03. 

See also

External links

  • "Information about the John N. Cobb's Fairbanks-Morse Diesel Engine". Old Tacoma Marine Inc. Retrieved 2012-09-03. 
  • Prézelin, Bernard, and A. D. Baker III. The Naval Institute Guide to Combat Fleets of the World 1990/1991: Their Ships, Aircraft, and Armament. Annapolis, Maryland: United States Naval Institute, 1990. ISBN 0-87021-250-8.

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