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Clean Transport

Published on May 29th, 2017 | by Steve Hanley


Norwegian Billionaire Funding Largest Ocean Research Vessel Ever

May 29th, 2017 by  

In partnership with the World Wildlife Fund, Norwegian billionaire Kjell Inge Røkke is building REV, the world’s largest superyacht. REV stands for Research Expedition Vessel. At 596 feet, it easily surpasses the size of any other privately owned vessel afloat. The ship will be built at Vard shipyard in Norway and will be available for use by scientists to conduct research on the oceans and ocean animals. Completion is scheduled for the middle of 2020.

largest ocean research vesselThe facilities onboard will include laboratory facilities and auditoriums where presentations regarding ongoing ocean research can take place. In addition, state of the art communications systems will allow those not on board to share in the conferences and debates taking place on REV.

The gigantic ship will be powered by hybrid power that combines diesel engines with 5-bladed controllable pitch propellers optimized for quiet operation. Other environmentally friendly touches include systems to minimize underwater noise pollution, a ballast water treatment system to prevent species cross-contamination, and LED lighting throughout the ship.

Any and all waste materials, including plastics, will be incinerated by a high-tech system that limits the amount of toxic gasses released into the atmosphere. A heat recovery system will be employed and sea water will be used to provide air conditioning when ocean temperatures are suitable for that purpose.

The ship can accommodate up 90 to 100 passengers, depending on how it is being used. It can be rented out by private parties, with the rental fees going to help pay for fuel and maintenance costs. With a top speed of 17 knots, it will cruise at 11 knots. Range for the superyacht will be 21,300 nautical miles and it will carry enough food for 114 days. Extra refrigerated containers can be mounted on the deck to extend the food supply up to another 40 days.

A the ship is being built, engineers are racing to complete the design of its most innovative technology. REV will be able to collect and dispose of plastics it encounters during its travels through the oceans of the world. The plastics will be incinerated along with other waste products in the least polluting manner possible using the onboard incinerator.

The world’s oceans are in desperate trouble from acidification and man-made pollution of every kind. The mission of the REV is to study and understand the threats to the seas and devise ways to ameliorate them through a partnership between one of the world’s wealthiest men and one of its leading environmental protection non-profit organizations.

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About the Author

Steve writes about the interface between technology and sustainability from his home in Rhode Island and anywhere else the Singularity may take him. His muse is Charles Kuralt -- "I see the road ahead is turning. I wonder what's around the bend?" You can follow him on Google + and on Twitter.

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