The Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute has announced the construction of its latest research vessel, the R/V David Packard.
The ship is named in honor of the institute’s founder and will add significant research capabilities to the team at MBARI. The new ship will be built in Vigo, Spain, and will be 50 meters (164 feet) long, with a crew of 12 plus 18 scientists. The new vessel will be the command center for MBARI’s remotely operated vehicle Doc Ricketts, allowing researchers to further study the deeper parts of the ocean.
Commenting on the new ship, MBARI President and Chief Executive Officer Chris Scholin stated:
“MBARI’s mission to explore and understand the ocean is more important than ever, especially in light of the growing threats of climate change, overfishing, and pollution. This new state-of-the-art research vessel will expand MBARI’s reach and enhance our research, engineering development, and outreach efforts.”
Julie Packard, the institute founder’s daughter and Chair of MBARI’s Board of Directors and Executive Director of the Monterey Bay Aquarium, added:
“To safeguard Earth’s living ocean, we need to invest much more in science and exploration. That’s something my father understood when he founded MBARI in 1987. MBARI’s new vessel will be a powerful research and exploration platform. And it will help Monterey Bay Aquarium show people around the world the wonders of deep-sea life by supporting our upcoming exhibition, Into the Deep: Exploring Our Undiscovered Ocean. I’m excited about the potential the R/V David Packard can contribute to inspiring ocean education and conservation for decades to come.”
(Image credit: Glosten/MBARI)