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Vessel Data and Contact Information for the
Charles Darwin

Last Updated - 3/5/2003
Main Activities
Capacities & Workspaces
Range, Speed, Endurance
DP Equipment
CTD Specs
Coring Specs
Underwater Vehicles
Diving Capabilities
Engineering Design
Navigation & Communications
Acoustics & Profiling
Winches, Gantries & Cranes
Country: UK

NODC Code:

    Call Sign: GDLS
Owner: Natural Envoronment Research Council
Operator: NERC Research Ship Unit
Contact: Andy Louch, Operations Manager
Address: RSU Operations
Southampton Oceanography Centre, Empress Dock, Southampton
SO14 3ZH, UK
Telephone: +44 2380 596800
Fax: +44 2380 635130
Year Built: 1984
Ship URL: Link to Ship Home Page

Ship Schedule URL:


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Main Dimensions

  Length OA: 69.4  m
  Breadth: 14.4  m
  Freeboard to working deck: 2.7  m
  Max. draft: 4.85  m

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Main Vessel Activity

  Main Activity: Oceanography
  Operating Area: Worldwide
  Navy Grids Supported:

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Capacities and Working Spaces

  Gross tonnage: 1936  GRT
  Dry cargo holds: 256  m3
  Fuel: 453  m3
  Wet Labs Area: 16  m2
  Dry Lab Area: 130  m2
  Fresh Water
 Storage Capacity:
70  m3
  Fresh Water Generator Capacity: 5  m3/day
  Scientific Clean Water Generation: Milli Pore
  Free Working Deck Area: 336  m2
  Space for container lab: 4 x 20 ISO  m
  Radioactive Isotope Work Areas: Container available  m

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Range, Speed and Endurance

  Range: 9240  nautical miles
  Cruising Speed: 11  kts.
  Max. Speed: 13  kts.
  Endurance: 42  days

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  Officers: 9
  Other crew: 12
  Scientists: 18
  Air Conditioned:  Yes

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Data Processing Equipment:

  Computers: SUN Microsystems (3) 3/60, DOS, 40-80MB. WINCHESTER
  Printing/Plotting: Unknown

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CTD Specifications:

  CTD Aboard: CTD system held within UK Marine Equip. Pool
  CTD Type: Seabird and Neil Brown
  CTD Tow able: CTD on towed Seasor Instrument
  CTD Oxygen Sensing: Unknown
  CTD Transmissivity: Unknown
  CTD Fluormeter: Unknown
  CTD Rosette: Unknown

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Coring Specifications:

  Coring Capabilities Aboard: As part of UK Marine Equipment Pool
  Grab Sampler: Yes
  Box Corer: USNEL and NIOZ
  Gravity Corer: Yes
  Piston Corer: Yes and Giant Piston Corer
  Multi Corer: Unknown

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Underwater Vehicle Capabilities:

  Underwater Vehicle Support: Possible
  ROVs: Unknown
  AUVs: Unknown
  Submersibles: Unknown

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Diving Support:

  Diving Capabilities: Unknown

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Engineering Design Particulars


Ice Breaking Ability:


Hull Materials:

  Dynamic Positioning Ability: Unknown
  Engines: Main engine(s): number:  3   make:  3 off, Mirlees Blackstone
Power (BHP) each engine:  7950 at 875RPM
Propeller Diameter:  Unknown
  m Max. RPM:   195
Total power auxiliary diesels:  Unknown
  Electrical Systems:  


 Voltages: 415/110V, 240V
     kVA: 200/12
    Phases: 3/1


50/50  Hz

Stabilized System:  Unknown  VAC  Unknown  AMPs   Unknown  Hz



  Unknown   Volts with  Unknown  Volts Max


Fixed Equipment

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Navigation and Communication:

  Navigational Equipment: Full navigation suite
  Communications Equipment: Inmarsat A and Inmarsat B
  Satellite Communications Equipment: Unknown
  GPS: DGPS available

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Acoustics and Profiling:

  Echosounders: 10Khz, 38Khz
  Sonar Type: Simrad
  Sea Surface Mapping System: Unknown
  Side Scanning: Unknown
  Multibeam: Simrad EM12
  Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler: RDI 150Khz, Narrow Band
  Silent Ship Operations: Unknown

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  Winches: 2  
    Steel Wire Length: 8800  m,  safe working load:  2.5  tons
    Conducting Cable Length:  10000  m , safe working load:  10  tons
    Trawl winch length:  Unknown , safe working load:  Unknown
    Other Winches:
      Length:  7000  m , safe working load:  10  tons
  Gantry: Position: Aft and amidships

Clearance above deck:  7.6  m , and outboard extension:  4.4  m


Safe working load at maximum reach:  12.5  tons

  Crane: Position: 4

Clearance above deck:  Unknown  and outboard extension:  Unknown


Safe working load at maximum reach:  2.7  tons

  Other:   Unknown

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Vessel Construction and Maintenance Supervision

  Construction Supervised by: UK MCA
  Classification Society: Lloyds, 100A1, 12 hours UMC
  Others, Specify: Unknown
OCEANIC - Ships Schedules & Information Pages
University of Delaware, College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment
Lewes, Delaware  19958
Phone:  (302) 645-4225