Aurora Expeditions has announced that it will name its second purpose-built expedition ship after the acclaimed marine biologist and oceanographer, Dr. Sylvia Earle.
The new ship honors Sylvia as an accomplished marine biologist, oceanographer and explorer; the first woman to become chief scientist of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and named by Time Magazine as its first Hero for the Planet in 1998. The vessel pays tribute to Sylvia’s long-standing conservation efforts for marine protected areas and ocean wildlife, Aurora said.
Built to world-class polar standards the ship, the Sylvia Earle will launch in October 2021 in Ushuaia, Argentina. In the spirit of exploration, and as part of its commitment to responsible travel, Aurora Expeditions said it will continue to name its new ships after explorers who are passionate about their environmental commitment and who share the company’s vision for the future.
Aurora Expeditions said that its ships have low-polluting marine engines due to a combination of low energy consumption, high fuel efficiency and a streamlined design. The Tier 3 engine delivers an 80 percent reduction in emissions and can utilize virtual anchoring to hold its position instead of dropping an anchor on the delicate sea floor. Onboard desalination plants convert seawater to fresh water that is safe to drink. Ships therefore carry less fresh water on sea crossings, further reducing fuel consumption.
Activities will play a major part in the passenger experience – with expert-led kayak expeditions, polar ski touring, climbing, snowshoeing, hiking and exploration by Zodiac.
In addition to a line-up of expedition guides, there are plans for marine researchers, scientists and conservationists to join the expedition team onboard the Sylvia Earle.
The 126-passenger ship will be the second in the fleet to sail with the patented Ulstein X-bow, whose inverted bow design, in combination with Rolls Royce dynamic stabilizers, offers improved stability on ocean crossings, Aurora Expeditions said. The bow design cuts through the swell, minimizing vibrations and disturbances, and makes quicker transits through waves. This helps reduce fuel consumption by up to 60 percent.
As well as improving comfort, the inverted bow offers an enhanced viewing experience by bringing passengers much closer to the immediate environment than that which can be achieved on ships with a traditional, bulbous shaped bow, Aurora Expeditions said. The Greg Mortimer was the first passenger ship to incorporate this technology.
On the Sylvia Earle, the bow will incorporate a unique two-level glass atrium lounge, offering extraordinary views to the front of the ship.