OSU to build nation’s newest research vessel

Oregon State received $122M from National Science Foundation

The proposed ocean going research vessel at Oregon State University is seen in this rendering provided July 13, 2017 by OSU
The proposed ocean going research vessel at Oregon State University is seen in this rendering provided July 13, 2017 by OSU

CORVALLIS, Ore. (AP) – Oregon State University is leading the effort to build the nation’s next class of research vessels to advance ocean science.

The university received nearly $122 million from the National Science Foundation to lead construction of the first of three ships for the U.S. Academic Research Fleet. The grant is the largest in the university’s history.

The vessels will advance research in the coastal regions of the United States and Alaska. The first ship will support research missions along the U.S. West Coast with later vessels dedicated to other regions.

OSU officials say the new vessels will help scientists better understand rising sea levels, ocean acidification, declining fisheries, offshore energy and other issues.

The ship will be equipped with advanced equipment, including sensors to detect harmful algal blooms and changing ocean chemistry. The university is expected to begin operating the vessel in 2021.