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ARA Punta Alta

ARA Punta Alta (33866567363) (cropped).jpg
United States
Name: Red Birch
Builder: United States Coast Guard Yard, Curtis Bay
Launched: 1964
Commissioned: 1964
Decommissioned: 2000
Fate: transferred to Argentine Navy
Name: Punta Alta (Q63)
Namesake: city of Punta Alta, Argentina
Commissioned: 2000
Homeport: Puerto Belgrano Naval Base
Status: Active
Notes: Initially in service with the US Coast Guard
General characteristics
Type: Multipurpose ship
Displacement: 525 tons
Length: 49.05 m (160.9 ft)
Beam: 10 m (32.8 ft)
Draft: 2 m (6.6 ft)
Propulsion: 2-shaft, 2 × diesel engines
Speed: 12.6 knots (14.5 mph; 23.3 km/h)
Complement: 31 (6 officers)
Armament: none
Notes: Career and characteristics data from “Histarmar” [1] and “Argentine Navy” [2] websites.

ARA Punta Alta (Q-63) is a multipurpose auxiliary ship of the Argentine Navy, built in the Curtis Bay Shipyard, United States, in 1964; transferred to Argentina in 2000, she is based at Puerto Belgrano. The vessel is named after the Argentine city of Punta Alta, which is close to Puerto Belgrano, and is the second Argentine naval ship with this name.[2][1]


Punta Alta is a multipurpose ship specialized in buoy maintenance, built at the US Coast Guard shipyard, Curtis Bay, United States. Her hull is specially designed for these tasks, being highly manoeuvrable thanks to its two variable-pitch propellers, twin rudders, and bow thruster. She has a metal hull and superstructure, and a single mast and funnel.[1]

It is powered by two 16-cylinder V, 900 HP, “Caterpillar” D398 marine diesel engines [3] driving two propellers; and two bow thrusters. It also carries two 100 Kw GM diesel generators, and two cranes with 10 ton and 5 ton lifting capacity.[2][1]

It carries an aluminium hull launch powered by a 130 HP engine and equipped with communications and sounding equipment.[2][1]


The buoy tender Red Birch was commissioned by the US Coast Guard in 1964, and served with that service until decommissioned in 2000; and transferred to Argentina. She was commissioned in the same year by the Argentine Navy as Punta Alta with pennant number Q-63; and was assigned to the Puerto Belgrano Naval Base, which is still its homeport.[1][2]

See also



  1. ^ a b c d e f "Buque Multipropósito Clase A.R.A. "Ciudad de Zarate" (Armada Hoy – Histarmar)" (in Spanish). Fundación Histarmar. Retrieved 2017-04-08.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Buques Multipropósito (Armada Argentina - Poder Naval - Flota de Mar - Unidades)" (in Spanish). Argentine Navy. Retrieved 2017-04-08.
  3. ^ "Caterpillar D398 (Description & Specifications)". Worldwide Power Products. Retrieved 2017-04-09.


Other sources

Further reading

  • Rodríguez, Horacio; Arguindeguy, Pablo. Buques de la Armada Argentina: Sus comandos y operaciones. Vol. III (in Spanish). Buenos Aires, Argentina: Presidencia de la Nación, Secretaría de Cultura.