Australia’s new blue-water research vessel, RV Investigator, completes its delivery voyage from Singapore to Hobart today. In 2009, the Australian Government allocated $120 million for a new ocean-going research vessel to replace the old Marine National Facility, the 66 m RV Southern Surveyor. The new 93 m vessel was designed by RALion from the USA and Canada and built by Sembawang Shipyard in Singapore through the CSIRO Future Research Vessel Project.
Extensive consultation amongst Australia’s marine science community has resulted in a world class research vessel with an impressive list of equipment and capabilities. For example, the seabed 3D mapping includes a Kongsberg EM122 multibeam capable of working to full ocean depth – 11,000 m. A Kongsberg EM710 multibeam can acquire 3D bathymetry and backscatter data down to 2,000 m. Below is an animation of the 3D mapping, and fact sheets for the ship.