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HARWICH, UK: September 21, 2018. Hutchison Ports Harwich International has become a new base for the British Antarctic Survey’s two ice-strengthened Royal Research Ships, the RRS James Clark Ross and the RRS Ernest Shackleton.

Polar shipThe vessels  are making a port call to load ship’s stores and a diverse range of supplies, from snowmobiles and foodstuffs, to construction materials and bonded goods, all destined for the UK’s numerous Antarctic bases. Additionally, the vessels will complete a full crew change as well as embark  scientific staff and their equipment prior to their deployment to the Antartic until next summer.

Mark Seaman, finance director for Hutchison Ports (UK) commented: “Harwich International is well known for its excellent ferry links to the Continent.  However the port has a wide range of facilities and handles a variety of cargoes and ship types. We normally see general and project cargoes as well as both dry and liquid bulks, cruise and offshore-support vessels, so the two survey ships fit well with this and are an exciting addition to our customer base.

The RRS James Clark Ross (pictured) is one of the world’s largest polar research vessels for biological, oceanographic and geophysical operations. It is equipped with a suite of laboratories and winch systems that allow scientific equipment to be deployed astern or amidships. The ship has an extremely low noise signature, allowing the deployment of sensitive acoustic equipment.

The RRS Ernest Shackleton, launched in 1995, is primarily a logistics vessel used to transport cargo, fuel and passengers. The ship also has a basic scientific capability and undertakes some research work. The vessel also has a cargo tender 'Tula' on deck for ship-to-shore transfer of equipment.

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