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repairs initially estimated to require 90 days.1 This enabled Yorktown to play a significant role in the Battle of Midway, an action that is regarded as the turning point in the Pacific war. In 1943 he was sent to the U.S. Navy’s Bureau of Ships Preliminary Design Division in Washington, D.C., and later evaluated damage to target ships as an observer to the Bikini atom bomb tests. He left active duty in 1946 but continued to serve in the U.S. Navy Reserve, retiring with the rank of captain in 1978.

Upon moving to Seattle in 1953, Glosten entered a partnership with Phillip Spaulding and Hart Livingston. His own consulting practice was established in 1958 as L. R. Glosten, Naval Architect & Marine Engineer. Much of his early work involved the design of tugs and barges for operation at sea and in river systems as widely separated as the Columbia, the Yukon, and the Nile. He designed barges to transport bulk cargo, liquid cargo, containers, and large-diameter pipes for the Alyeska pipeline. One of the barge innovations in which he was involved was the “dry tow” of very large floating structures, such as offshore drilling platforms. In these operations a barge was submerged by flooding internal compartments, the floating cargo was brought over it, and the barge was pumped dry, lifting the cargo out of the water for transport. Another unusual submersible barge design was the Hughes mining barge, part of a Central Intelligence Agency scheme intended to raise a sunken Cold War–era Russian submarine. The Glosten organization designed a number of tugs for both river and sea-going service, including small shallow draft vessels for Northern Alaska, Columbia River towboats, ocean towing vessels, harbor assist, and escort tugs.

Glosten invented the “Sea Link” articulated tow system by means of which a barge could be pushed ahead of a tug, a more efficient system than the conventional means of towing behind on a long towline. Sea Link provided a degree of motion flexibility and relief from wave-induced loads between tug and barge while still maintaining directional control of


1 Samuel Eliot Morison, History of United States Naval Operations in World War II, vol. 4, p. 81 (New York: Little, Brown, 1949).



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