REV Ocean announced the first water launch of the world’s largest and most advanced research and expedition vessel (REV Ocean). After an extensive and complicated build period over the past 18 months, the vessel was finally lowered into the water on August 24 at the VARD Tulcea shipyard in Romania.
“Today is an especially exciting day, our state-of-the-art research vessel has achieved a major milestone and we are now one step closer to realizing our vision of safeguarding the ocean. We look forward with great anticipation to REV Ocean’s journey to Norway and seeing the next stage of progress towards our ambitions of developing ocean solutions,” Nina Jensen, CEO of REV Ocean, commented. “REV Ocean will strive to fill critical knowledge gaps, develop innovative solutions, and bridge science, business and policy sectors to achieve positive change. Taking on the role of ocean trailblazers the goal is to create positive, measurable impact; provide a pathway for others to follow and motivate the next generation of ocean leaders. Our vision of ensuring – One Healthy Ocean – forms the core mantra of the whole organization,” she added.
“It is an emotive experience launching REV, to have developed and overseen REV from a blank piece of paper three and half years ago has been a challenging, educational, rewarding experience, the project evolved into something far more complicated and ambitious than I ever assumed and it has been a personal career highlight. Our Build Team, VARD Group and our Partners have worked and are working incredibly hard realizing Mr Kjell Inge Røkkes wishes to create this amazing expedition vessel. We still have a long way to go and a lot of hard graft ahead, but I cannot wait to get her to Norway and start the next phase. REV will be a truly inspiring vessel in looks and purpose when we deliver her to REV Ocean,” George Gill, Project Director and Owners Representative, mentioned.
Over the coming weeks the expedition vessel will be towed down the Danube River, into the Black Sea, out through the dramatic Bosporus Strait in Istanbul, traverse the Mediterranean, exit around the Strait of Gibraltar, and finally arrive at the VARD shipyard in Brattvag, Norway. The journey is estimated to take 30 – 35 days depending on conditions en-route.
“Now that the initial build phase is complete, we anxiously await her delivery in Norway where we will focus on installing technical gear, scientific equipment, research labs, and all the exciting tools that researchers will use to achieve our core science goals,” Oystein Mikelborg, REV Ocean Operations Director, pointed out.
REV Ocean will be equipped for conducting missions that cover the entire marine ecosystem. It will be used by scientists and innovators for ‘solutions’-oriented research that explore issues such as the impact CO2 emissions have on the ocean, plastic pollution, and unsustainable fishing. REV Ocean will be an inclusive global vehicle for testing and proliferating ocean solutions. The vessel is 182.9 meters long and will have the capacity of holding 55 scientists and 35 crew. Equipment onboard includes scientific trawls, sonar systems, laboratories, auditorium and classrooms, moonpool, AUV and submarine, an ROV with 6000 meters depth capacity, and advanced communication equipment.
“This was very much the brainchild of the owner, he called me to tell me about this project which is unlike any other expedition vessel in the world – a yacht with a purpose, a noble purpose. The whole rhetoric is kind of a showcase of state-of-the-art marine equipment and I think it will be the best equipped scientific ship on the sea. It is probably the most important project we will ever have the chance to work on,” Espen Oeino, the Yacht Designer, said.
REV Ocean is a not-for-profit company established and funded by Norwegian businessman Kjell Inge Røkke. The foundation was established as a result of Mr. Røkke signing the Giving Pledge campaign in 2017 vowing to give away more than 50% of his fortune to philanthropic causes. Any profit generated from the activities will be reinvested into its work programme for a healthier ocean.
Watch the time-lapse and video of the launch here: