RV Falkor – Some Facts & Stats

There’s this dinky little boat tied up at Victoria Quay at the moment, apparently until 8 March, called the Research Vessel Falkor. When we say ‘little’, well she’s 83 metres long. Not tiny. Here’s a nice file shot of her.

Schmidt Ocean Institute Research Vessel Falkor

Once a fishing boat, she was converted a while ago into an ocean research vessel by and for the Schmidt Ocean Institute.

Schmidt Ocean Institute was created by Eric and Wendy Schmidt in 2009 to enable research that expands understanding of the world’s ocean using advanced technology, intelligent observation, and the open sharing of information. Eric is a former Google executive. The organisation invites select scientific teams annually from around the world to carry out collaborative oceanographic research and technology development aboard the Schmidt Ocean Institute.

Throughout 2020, Schmidt Ocean Institute RV Falkor and its 4,500 m rated ROV SuBastian will conduct deep-sea exploration of submarine canyons and coral ecosystems on all four sides of the Australian continent.

Here’s Falkor’s projected journey around Australia. Image: Schmidt Ocean Institute.

RV Falkor’s projected journey around Australia.

Have a look here https://schmidtocean.org/education/rov-faqs/ to see just how the ROV flies. Amazing stuff.

The data collected has important implications for the sustainability of these ecosystems, as well as similar habitats worldwide, providing much-needed deep-water data key to accurately modeling and predicting ocean-climate dynamics in a warming world with increasing carbon dioxide concentrations.

Falkor is currently in from Albany and then off to Exmouth on 8 March.

But on 7 March you can visit her, clamber all over and get an idea of what research she does. Amazing opportunity to learn more about ocean research.

Here’s the advert inviting you aboard.

Free public ship tour of the RV Falkor

As to the name Falkor, children of the ’80s familiar with The Neverending Story, will remember the characters Atreyu and Falkor who soared together through the skies. This Falkor, especially the ROV, flies through the oceans.

We believe the pleasure craft Atreyu TT Falkor is somewhere nearby. Keep an eye out!


Here’s a virtual tour of the RV Falkor’s cockpit, and some images of the vessel in port at Fremantle taken by FSN’s David Smyth.

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