The new wide-area sea bed research ship will have the capacity to maintain big piston corers, seafloor-mountable excavator for gathering seabed samples, remotely operated vehicle (ROV), autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) and state-of-the-art equipment as seismic research system for crustal structure investigations.
There will be also a marine research laboratory on board in order to exclude the possibility of time-lag deterioration of the samples.
The vessel will be approximately 100 meters long and 19 meters wide with gross tonnage of circa 5,500 tons. Crew capacity will be 65 and the speed about 12 knots.
Construction is scheduled to begin this fiscal year at the MHI's Shimonoseki Shipyard & Machinery Works in Yamaguchi Prefecture and to be completed by March 2016.