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Still Tilting at the SCORPION Windmill: Attacking Another Garbage Assessment

Pass to Sebastien Roblin

Your SCORPION article is a mass of misinformation. Link: https://nationalinterest.org/blog/buzz/50-years-ago-us-navy-lost-submarine-shocking-accident-heres-what-happenned-40137

First: SCORPION was NOT a 34-knot submarine. It has only 15,000 shaft horsepower. Thirty-four knots would have required about twice that horsepower. On her acceptance trials, SKIPJACK, the lead ship of the class, achieved a maximum speed of 29.4 knots.

Second: your assertion that “Approaching midnight on May 21, the Scorpion’s captain, thirty-six-year-old Commander Francis Slattery, transmitted that he had located a Soviet submarine at a depth of 110 meters, and was “to begin surveillance of the Soviets.” is pure fiction. See the following:

At 2354 GMT on 21 May 1968, SCORPION sent a last message that reported a 220001 GMT position of 31-21N, 27-36W, an intended course of 290 and a planned speed of advance (SOA) of 18 knots for the remaining five day transit to Norfolk, Virginia, with an arrival time of 1700 GMT on 27 May.
At 18:20:44 GMT on 22 May, a battery-related explosion killed those members of the SCORPION crew in spaces forward of the reactor compartment and caused extensive structural damage within those spaces. SCORPION sank vertically at an average of 0.36 m/s (0.7 knots) until the pressure-hull collapsed (imploded) at a depth of 466m (1530-feet) at 18:42:34 GMT. The wreckage then continued to sink vertically.
The position of the SCORPION wreckage - first identified on 28 October 1968 - is 32-55N, 33-09W. That position lies 297 nautical miles, bearing 290 from the position SCORPION reported 18 hours and 27 minutes before the time of the battery explosion.

The SOA required to transit that distance in that time is 16.1 knots which placed SCORPION about 35 nm behind her Projected Intended Movement (PIM) at the time of the battery explosion, well within the moving position “box” established for the transit to avoid interference with other US submarine operations.

Thus, SCORPION was on course and only slightly behind her PIM when lost because of a battery-related explosion contained within the pressure-hull. Interactions with hostile forces - as conjectured by conspiracy theorists - could not have occurred.

Repeating the bottom line: SCORPION was lost because hydrogen out-gassed by the TLX-53-A main battery exploded at 18:20:44 GMT on 22 May 1968 killing/incapacitating the crew. That event did not breach the pressure-hull. SCORPION then slowly sank to collapse (implode) at 18:42:34 GMT at a depth of 1530-feet.

I suggest you admit you errors, apologize for having published such erroneous assessments and acknowledge your sources.

Bruce Rule

Re: Still Tilting at the SCORPION Windmill: Attacking Another Garbage Assessment

Chilling reminder of tragic event. Thanks Bruce