Falklands flagged RRS Sir David Attenborough will spend the next two weeks testing anchoring, maneuvering, and dynamic positioning, as well as other engineering systems, such as freshwater making, that cannot be tested while in port. The trials will primarily take place in and around the Irish Sea, although some may take place on the West Coast of Scotland and the Celtic Sea.
Commissioned by the Natural Environment Research Council and operated by British Antarctic Survey, the new polar ship will transform UK research in the Polar Regions. Its missions are critical for understanding and making sense of our changing climate.
After the sea trials, the ship will then return to Holyhead, before heading to the Arctic for extensive ice trials. In November will make its maiden voyage to Antarctica.
This multidisciplinary research platform will transform how ship-borne science is conducted in the polar regions and provide scientists with state-of-the-art facilities to research the oceans, seafloor, ice and atmosphere.
Captain Will Whatley said that “This is another exciting milestone in the commissioning of the RRS Sir David Attenborough. During these trials, we will put the ship through its paces and further develop our understanding of the ship’s performance and capabilities.
In these initial sea trials, we are setting out to prove the capability of the ship’s systems and train the crew in the operation of the ship; both aspects are key parts of our preparation for the spring ice trials in the Arctic. One of the tests for the ship will be making sure the ship can handle some stormy weather!”