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  • Writer's pictureSarah Whiteford

Fact Friday: The first Dynamic Positioning System

The first Dynamic positioning system was deployed in 1961 on the CUSS-1.

Images from Life Magazine, April 1961

The April 1961 issue of Life Magazine presented a story on this very impressive achievement:

Text from April 1961 Life Magazine. Sound familiar?

According to the Marine Technology Society’s Dynamic Positioning Committee:

“The CUSS 1 (named for the Continental, Union, Superior, and Shell oil companies that developed it in 1956) was the first drillship in the modern sense of the word. It was equipped with four rotating thrusters, one at each corner, and was the first vessel to use dynamic positioning. Position monitoring was provided by way of submergible sonar buoys in a circular pattern around the vessel, from which it received signals in order to maintain a footprint of approximately 600 feet in diameter.”

Thanks to the MTS DP Committee for compiling these references at:

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