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Research Vessel RRS Sir David Attenborough Officially Named

One of the world’s most advanced polar research vessels, RRS Sir David Attenborough, has been officially named at a special naming ceremony held at Cammell Laird’s Birkenhead, UK, shipyard. Sir David Attenborough and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge attended the event, along with over 600 invited guests and more than 4,000 members of the public.

Commissioned by the Natural Environment Research Council and constructed by Cammell Laird for operation with British Antarctic Survey, RRS Sir David Attenborough is designed to carry out intensive, multi-disciplinary missions of scientific significance, with minimal impact on the ocean environment it will be used to study.

“Kongsberg has supported development of the RRS Sir David Attenborough from the very early days, helping us to realise our vision for such a unique and pioneering ship”, said Professor Dame Jane Francis, Director of British Antarctic Survey. “Our missions will take us to the most remote areas with the most extreme conditions, but we are confident that the technology onboard will enable safe navigation and control, as well as capture of the data our scientists need to address the environmental challenges that we all face today, and in the future.”

Thanks to sophisticated, green, cost-effective solutions including an energy management system, cutting-edge sensors and remotely-operated robotic technologies which all come under Kongsberg Maritime’s ‘Full Picture’ scope of delivery, RRS Sir David Attenborough’s design focuses on fuel and logistical efficiency, and is expected to save in excess of £100 million in operating expenditure over the course of its 30-year lifespan.

“Knowing the importance of deep-ocean and under-ice research, it’s an honour to be trusted with enabling safe and efficient marine operations on RRS Sir David Attenborough, as well as providing the platform for the data capture and analysis that will engender new scientific insight”, said Egil Haugsdal, President, Kongsberg Maritime. “We wish all those working onboard every success and anticipate some amazing findings as the ship embarks on the first of its long research voyages.”