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OceanX

Research ship has tech to unveil ocean’s deep secrets

on November 25 2020 | in Highlights, Latest news | by | with Comments Off

Blockbuster movie maker, ocean explorer, and New Zealand resident James Cameron had a hand in turning what was a survey ship for oil companies into the most advanced marine research and multi-media production vessel on the planet.

It’s called the OceanXplorer, an 87-metre vessel gutted and retrofitted by Netherlands outfit Damen Shiprepair. It will explore the world’s oceans and bring its research to audiences via a special National Geographic television series titled Mission OceanX. The documentary is being produced in association with the BBC.

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The ship’s media studio has been developed by Cameron (above) and production designer N.C. Page Buckner (One Night in Miami, The Amazing Spiderman, Iron Man 2). The on-board studio will also live stream scientific news at the moment of discovery.

Canadian-born Cameron, 66, an environmentalist who owns properties in the Wairarapa, is National Geographic’s Explorer at Large. He will follow the vessel and a team of ocean storytellers and leading scientists.

The OceanXplorer features:

  • a resident Airbus H125 helicopter housed in a climate-controlled hangar
  • onboard molecular biology, and imaging laboratories, onsite DNA sequencing capabilities,
  • two manned Triton submersibles that can reach depths of more than 1000m
  • a remotely operated underwater vehicle that can dive to 6000m
  • a 40-tonne crane for launching and recovering the submersibles
  • the vessel is also the only ship in the world capable of utilizing 8K RED cameras at a depth of 6000m.

Mission OceanX will premiere in 171 countries and 43 languages. The first season will focus on the North Atlantic Ocean and thereafter on the world’s other oceans.

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