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Research community encouraged to participate in survey on future of Antarctic science vessels

July 24, 2018

An ad hoc subcommittee of the Office of Polar Programs’ Advisory Committee, dealing with the U.S. Antarctic Program’s (USAP) Research Vessel Procurement, is seeking the participation of the research community in reviewing and assessing the science-mission requirements and operational capabilities of replacement Antarctic research vessels. 

Those who may have received an invitation to take a survey on future requirements via Survey Monkey, may use the link in that email message. Those who did not, may take the survey here: It should take about 30 minutes to complete.

The survey is open to NSF grantees and those at any federal agency who have experience aboard USAP vessels operating in the Southern Ocean and elsewhere in Antarctic waters.

The subcommittee wishes to have all surveys submitted by Aug. 6.

The vessels in the USAP's existing Antarctic research fleet--the Laurence M. Gould and the Nathaniel B. Palmer--are nearing the end of their design lives. The advisory committee is studying all alternatives to the existing arrangement and is examining whether or not existing vessel specifications from past exercises and reports describe ships which would adequately support future science in the Southern Ocean and along the Antarctic Peninsula and margin.

The subcommittee will propose updates, changes, and improved specifications which would best support future science-support needs and will make a recommendation to OPP.

The U.S. National Science Foundation propels the nation forward by advancing fundamental research in all fields of science and engineering. NSF supports research and people by providing facilities, instruments and funding to support their ingenuity and sustain the U.S. as a global leader in research and innovation. With a fiscal year 2021 budget of $8.5 billion, NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and institutions. Each year, NSF receives more than 40,000 competitive proposals and makes about 11,000 new awards. Those awards include support for cooperative research with industry, Arctic and Antarctic research and operations, and U.S. participation in international scientific efforts.

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