UK's Boaty McBoatface submarine is set for its first voyage

Boaty McBoatface was the name chosen by the public for the UK’s new polar research ship. The British government, however, didn’t appreciate the humour and named it RRS Sir David Attenborough instead.

    2017/03/16

NSFW    LONDON — The yellow submarine named Boat McBoatface is set to begin its first voyage this week.

Boaty McBoatface was the name chosen by the public for the UK’s new polar research ship. The British government, however, didn’t appreciate the humor and named it RRS Sir David Attenborough, after the naturalist and broadcaster.

Boaty McBoatface is a new type of autonomous submersible that can descend to a depth of 6,000 meters and can travel under ice. It can transmit data back to its mothership via a radio link. There are in fact, three submersibles bearing the name.

It will leave Punta Arenas, Chile aboard British polar ship, RRS James Clark Ross to the Southern Ocean this Friday. The ship will release the submarine in an underwater ridge known as the Orkney Passage. The submarine is going to map the circulation of deep waters known as the ‘great ocean conveyor’, which plays a critical role in regulating our climate system.

“The Orkney Passage is a key chokepoint to the flow of abyssal waters in which we expect the mechanism linking changing winds to abyssal water warming to operate. We will measure how fast the streams flow, how turbulent they are, and how they respond to changes in winds over the Southern Ocean,” Professor Alberto Naveira Garabato from the University of Southampton, the lead scientist of the research cruise commented in a press release.
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