18th July, 2023: The RV Tom Crean, Ireland's cutting-edge research vessel, proudly celebrates its one-year anniversary since its arrival in Galway on July 18, 2022. We take this opportunity to reflect on the past 12 months and recognise its immense contribution to Ireland's marine science, made possible by the dedicated efforts of its highly skilled crew and scientists.
During this eventful year, the vessel accomplished significant milestones. It completed 296 survey days, welcoming 177 scientists across 20 surveys, totalling 2,060 scientist days. Traveling an impressive distance of 32,215 nautical miles, equivalent to circling Ireland approximately 46 times, the vessel showcased its remarkable range and capabilities, paving the way for next year and beyond.
Over the past 12 months, INFOMAR, Ireland's national seabed mapping program, successfully conducted 5 surveys, mapping a total area of 6,317 square kilometres – an area larger than County Galway. This comprehensive mapping effort will greatly contribute to our understanding of Ireland's seabed and its valuable resources.
Additionally, the vessel conducted 4 Nephrops Underwater TV Surveys, gathering valuable stock assessment data from 539 stations across the Porcupine Bank, Aran Grounds, Celtic Sea, and Bay of Biscay. This combined effort is approximately equal to 133 kilometres of seabed filmed.
The vessel served as a valuable training platform for students from institutions across Ireland also, providing 236 students with a unique learning experience over the course of 50 days throughout the year.
Commenting on the first anniversary of the vessel, Marine Institute Interim CEO Michael Gillooly said, “With its state-of-the-art capabilities and the dedication of its skilled crew and scientists, we eagerly await the vessel's next chapter, brimming with exciting accomplishments and ground breaking discoveries. The RV Tom Crean has proven itself as an invaluable asset to Ireland's scientific community, and we eagerly look forward to the remarkable achievements yet to come.”
Notes to Editor:
RV Tom Crean
Ireland's state-of-the-art multi-purpose marine research vessel RV Tom Crean, was delivered in July 2022 and is used by the Marine Institute and other State agencies and universities to undertake fisheries research, oceanographic and environmental research, seabed mapping surveys; as well as maintaining and deploying weather buoys, observational infrastructure and Remotely Operated Vehicles. https://www.marine.ie/site-area/infrastructure-facilities/research-vessels/tom-crean
The Marine Institute provides government, public agencies and the maritime industry with a range of scientific, advisory and economic development services that inform policy-making, regulation and the sustainable management and growth of Ireland’s marine resources. The Institute undertakes, coordinates and promotes marine research and development, which is essential to achieving a sustainable ocean economy, protecting ecosystems and inspiring a shared understanding of the ocean. www.marine.ie