State-owned company building nation's largest research ship
Construction of the ship, which will be named after renowned revolutionary and statesman Sun Yat-sen, started in late October at CSSC's Jiangnan Shipyard in Shanghai and is expected to take about two years, said Hu Keyi, head of the shipyard's science and technology committee.
Hu said the ship will have a displacement of 6,800 metric tons, making it the largest research vessel in China and surpassing the 5,000-ton Dongfanghong 3, which was also made by the shipyard and is operated by Ocean University of China in Qingdao, Shandong province.
Upon its completion, the ship will be delivered to Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, and will be used to carry out scientific expeditions and student training. It will carry modern scientific devices and high-performance servers and will be tasked with conducting surveys on water, atmosphere, ecological systems and resources, Hu said.
With podded propulsion units as its driving force, the vessel will boast better mobility than existing research ships in China, he said.
Wu Gang, the ship's chief designer at the Shanghai-headquartered Marine Design and Research Institute of China, said the research vessel will be one of the best sea-based scientific platforms in the world as well as the biggest research ship deployed by any university around the globe.
Its service will strongly improve the nation's research and personnel training in oceanography, he added.
"The ship features several technological and technical edges such as a fuel-efficient power system and ultra-silent mode," the designer said. "It can carry multiple unmanned boats and remotely operated underwater vehicles, and also can accommodate a helicopter. These assets will extend its operational range."
They made the remarks on the sidelines of the Marintec China 2019 that opened in Shanghai on Tuesday. The biennial exhibition is the largest and most important showcase of marine technology and products in China and has more than 2,200 exhibitors from over 30 countries and regions including the United States, Denmark and South Korea.
According to the Marine Design and Research Institute of China, the new research ship will be 114.3 meters long and will be able to carry 100 people-26 crew and 74 researchers, teachers and students. It will be capable of sailing more than 27,000 kilometers in a single voyage and sustaining a 60-day journey without the need of resupply.
China now operates more than 50 research ships and most of them are run by the State Oceanic Administration.
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