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nounced the decision not to build a nuclear propelled merchant ship now because the prospects of building a ship that would be economic to operate did not justify the large expenditure necessary to build a prototype. A small research and development program on the present types of reactors for merchant ship use, and the joint UK-Belgian Vulcain effort are being continued.

New proposals for a British nuclear merchant ship were presented at the British Nuclear Forum late in March 1966. The proposals envision fast container ships of as much as 80,000 SHP; ore ships are being considered as "second string" candidates. The proposals are by a private group which will ask Government subsidy. The second ship is expected to be economic.


It has been reported by French nuclear periodicals that the Chinese Nuclear Enery Commission and the Ministry of Transport began development in 1962 of a nuclear ship with the technical aid of Russia. They continued the development with further aid of Czechoslovakia, Rumania, and Poland during 1963. A Committee on Nuclear Propulsion was established at Tien-Tsin in 1963 and ship construction is reported to have begun in April 1964 at Tien-Tsin and may be already complete.

The ship is named "Zan Than" (Voice of the People) and described as 20,000 gross tons, propelled by two screws at 23.5 knots with two main propulsion units and two steam generators capable of 22,000 SHP each. The reactor is a 180 MWt pressurized water reactor with 98 fuel elements with zircalloy tubes containing UO pellets having 1.7% enriched uranium. An auxiliary propulsion engine is also provided. Refueling is to be accomplished in a special land based facility.


The present 1963-67 budget for the European Community includes a budget item for reactor development for merchant ship propulsion in the amount of $6,000,000. These funds supplement national support for active work on ship propulsion in three countries-Germany, Italy, and Norway.

(U.S. Department of Commerce)

The following companies have applied for the export of nuclear reactor information for the purposes of foreign interest in merchant ship propulsion.

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Mr. RUPPE. Do you feel that this construction is for prestige and national purposes rather than an evidence that other nations have reached a commercial economically feasible construction program for nuclear reactors?

Mr. SHAW. I think with the exception of the Lenin, these other two types of foreign applications are not the high priority application that I think most of us hoped for in terms of advancing national maritime shipping posture. Theirs are relatively low level and easier shipboard applications and not comparable to the ones that I think are in front of us as an overall objective-that is, a high performance application that can attract a lot of cargo and can operate economically.

These foreign ships are designed for operating in a "non-economic" environment. You don't need nuclear power to carry ore or to do oceanographic research as such.

Mr. RUPPE. This won't open up new fields or future applications? Mr. SHAW. There may be an objective on the part of these countries to get a ship any type ship-operating with nuclear power in order to enhance their future posture. Our country is not in this position. We have a nuclear powered Navy. Our posture can be considered somewhat different.

Mr. RUPPE. Thank you very much.

Mr. REINECKE. Before we close, may I ask one further question? The CHAIRMAN. Mr. Reinecke.

Mr. REINECKE. Mr. Shaw, you mentioned that you have visitors coming from overseas.

Mr. SHAW. Yes, sir.

Mr. REINECKE. We also had some information that the people at the Otto Hahn came over and exchanged or requested exchange on the information with respect to the Savannah with the AEC.

Mr. SHAW. Yes, sir. There is agreement between our country and the Germans to exchange information on the Otto Hahn.

Mr. REINECKE. Are we giving away any technology lead that we might have that was bought at our expense in the past 10 years?

Mr. SHAW. We are certainly exchanging operational information on the Savannah with their information on the Otto Hahn. Since their plant is more recent than ours, and our plant information is generally public anyway, I don't think we are giving away anything significant. Mr. REINECKE. The Otto Hahn isn't operational yet, so that they are not giving away operational information.

Mr. SHAW. But I think it is valuable information.

Mr. REINECKE. How about the Japanese?

Mr. SHAW. We have no exchange agreement with the Japanese, but I think Babcock & Wilcox, who will appear, had been working on some agreement with the Japanese. I think the Japanese have decided to build their own, though.

Mr. REINECKE. I hope we are not giving away so much information that it is going to make the merchant marine problems that much more difficult by advancing the course of nuclear propulsion in other countries.

Mr. Chairman, I have other questions, but I realize time is gone. May we have permission to request answers in writing?

The CHAIRMAN. Off the record.

(Discussion off the record.)

The CHAIRMAN. The committee will recess until tomorrow morning at 10 o'clock.

(Whereupon, at 12:05 p.m., the subcommittee recessed, to reconvene at 10 a.m., Wednesday, May 17, 1967.)






Washington, D.C. The subcommittee met at 10:10 a.m., pursuant to recess, in room 1334, Longworth House Office Building, Hon. Thomas N. Downing presiding.

Mr. DOWNING. The meeting will please come to order.

This is a continuation of our hearings concerning the proposed layup of the nuclear ship Savannah and related matters involving the future of nuclear merchant ships.

Yesterday, we were privileged to hear from Mr. Milton Shaw, Director of the Division of Reactor Development and Technology, of the Atomic Energy Commission. Since we could not receive permission to sit yesterday afternoon, we were unable to complete the questioning of Mr. Shaw, who has agreed to come back at a convenient time, probably next week.

Our first witness this morning is the distinguished Congressman from Georgia, the Honorable G. Elliott Hagan.

Our next witness will be Rear Adm. Ralph K. James, executive director of the Committee of American Steamship Lines, representing the American subsidized liner shipping companies.

Admiral James will be followed by Mr. W. H. Rowand, vice president, nuclear power generation, boiler division, of the Babcock & Wilcox Co., accompanied by other top officials of his company.

The Babcock & Wilcox Co. is a leader in the nuclear power field, was the builder of the reactor in the Savannah, and has done, and is doing, a great deal of work on the development of marine reactors. We are also scheduled to hear today from Mr. Herbert Hansen, vice president, marine department, of Waterman Steamship Corp., and Mr. Edward Teale, vice president of J. J. Henry Co., naval architects. Congressman, if you would now like to come forward and give your statement, the subcommittee will be grateful to you.



Mr. HAGAN. Mr. Chairman and members of the subcommittee, I am grateful for the opportunity of appearing before this subcommittee on behalf of the nuclear ship Savannah.

Gentlemen, I strongly urge that the NS Savannah be kept in service for an indefinite period, at least until some alternative is worked out. I believe that deactivation of the world's first nuclear-powered merchant vessel would be an admission of failure on our part that nuclear powered ships are not practical.

In addition, the premature laying up of this vessel would mean, in my opinion, a serious gap in the information needed for the design of future nuclear ships and the training of their crews.

With your permission, I submit two documents for the record: One is a copy of House Concurrent Resolution 314, which I introduced on April 17, calling on the President to take the necessary action to keep the nuclear ship Savannah in operation for an indefinite period. The resolution also asks that the vessel be permanently berthed in her home port of Savannah, Ga., when the time finally comes to deactivate the ship.

The second document is a resolution from the mayor and aldermen of the city of Savannah, Ga., urging continued operation of the ship. At least three-quarters of the world to which the NS Savannah was intended to sail has never seen the ship. I urge your consideration toward seeing that this great maritime mission is carried out. Mr. DOWNING. Thank you for your statement. Without objection, the documents will appear at this point in the record. (The material mentioned follows:)

[H. Con. Res. 314, 90th Cong., first sess.]


Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), That it is the sense of Congress that the President should take such action as may be necessary to provide for the continued operation of the nuclear ship Savannah for an indefinite period in order that—

(1) present feasibility studies, with regard to the commercial potential of this ship may be completed, particularly those which affect the design, technology, operations, and trade routes of our future nuclear ships;

(2) during this period it may be operated as a fair ship containing permanent and temporary exhibits relating to trade and industry and to other demonstrations of American economic accomplishments, and cultural attainments, such exhibits to be established, maintained, and operated through the participiation of both governmental agencies (Federal, State, and local) and private associations and organizations; and be it further

Resolved. That it is the the sense of Congress that an advance team of marketing and advertising experts should precede the ship's visit to any particular port to insure proper advance preparation for reception and utilization of the ship's activities; and be it further

Resolved, That it is the sense of Congress that the feasibility of recruiting a portion of the crew from the Federal and State merchant marine academies as part of their training procedures should be explored; and be it further

Resolved, That whenever it is determined that the nuclear ship Savannah should no longer be operated in trade and commerce or for other purposes, it shall be permanently berthed in the port of Savannah, Georgia.


April 17, 1967.

House Office Building,
Washington, D.C.

DEAR MR. CONGRESSMAN: At the request of City Council, we are enclosing herewith a copy of a resolution, adopted April 14, 1967, relative to the NS Savannah.

With kindest regards,

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Yours sincerely,

(Mrs.) KATHERINE S. REDMOND, Clerk of Council.


Whereas the operation of the first nuclear ship, the Savannah, has contributed great prestige to the American Merchant Marine, having visited ports both at home and abroad and has opened some of the major seaports in North European and Mediterranean areas to nuclear vessels; and

Whereas the NS Savannah, in carrying general cargoes to and from these ports, demonstrated, to the shippers, consignees and personnel involved in the handling of said cargoes, the safety involved in such operations; and

Whereas the Savannah has provided a program of instruction for future licensed officers and also resulted in the construction and development of facilities for servicing and refueling nuclear merchant ships as well as developing the feasibility of nuclear merchant ships in the future and furnished valuable information as to the operation of same; and

Whereas if the Savannah is laid up, as contemplated, it is felt that careful consideration should be given to certain facts before a decision as to the future of the Savannah is made; and

Whereas it is true that the NS Savannah has been operated at a loss, it should be borne in mind that this first nuclear ship was a "program" and the termination of this "program" would result not only in loss of prestige to this nation but would be a serious deterrent to the development of nuclear power in the shipping industry for many years to come; and

Whereas it should be borne in mind the fact that, should the Savannah be deactivated, the expense of maintaining the ship in a "cold iron watch status" would be great and result in a loss of valuable knowledge in the future development of nuclear powered ships: therefore, be it

Resolved by the Mayor and Aldermen of the City of Savannah, in Council assembled, That this body does express the hope that a decision as to the future of the NS Savannah will not be made impulsively and that careful consideration will be given to the continued operation of the vessel in the glorious tradition of the nation she represents.

Adopted and approved April 14, 1967.

Clerk of Council.

Mr. DOWNING. Admiral James, it is always a pleasure to have you before this committee. You have been here many times, and we value your opinion.

Do you have a prepared statement, sir?


Admiral JAMES. I have a prepared statement, Mr. Chairman, a very short one, and I would be pleased to read it if you so desire. Mr. DOWNING. All right. Proceed.

Admiral JAMES. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen, I appreciate this opportunity to present the position of the Committee of American

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