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21st to 23rd of May 2024
21st, 22nd & 23th
MAY 2024


Oceanographic vessels made in Vigo promoting marine research all over the world

Inaugural Falkor (Too) Expedition Finds 340 Degree Hydrothermal Vents in Puerto Rico

Last December, the American philanthropist Wendy Schmidt, co-founder of one of the most important marine research foundations in the world, personally went to Vigo to participate in the act of renaming the Falkor (Too), an oceanographic completely converted at Freire Shipyard in Vigo's Bay. This week, the shipowner, Schmidt Ocean Institute, celebrates the success of the first expedition of this state-of-the-art ship, designed to "provide the global scientific community with cutting-edge capabilities for ocean research and technological development."

Falkor (Too) is an example of the experience and potential that Galician shipbuilding industry has acquired on the oceanographics shipbuilding. Every year, ship units specialized on this area are built in Vigo's Bay slipways. Among the countries that took part of the shipyards are the United States, the United Kingdom, Norway, Belgium, Peru, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Sweden, Colombia, and Mexico.

Freire shipyard leads the way in this matter, awaiting the orders that Armón Vigo attends, a promise for the local industry after taking the Hijos de J. Barreras production unit last year's first quarter. Several contracts have recently been awarded for Ireland, New Zealand, Iceland, and it has just received an order for Azores islands. They are also in charge of the Spanish fleet new ship, Odón de Buen. In the case of Freire, they have been chosen for a new oceanographic for France.


The first find from the Falkor (Too) has been a group of black smoke vents issuing 340-degree Celsius water along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge near Puerto Rico. These boiling currents can rise to 200 feet above the seabed. Their temperature is determined by the hot magma of the submarine volcanoes from which they emerge. As explained by the Schmidt Ocean Institute, these are spaces of great biodiversity and marine life that has blended into this environment of extremely high temperatures. The American newspaper The Washington Post has echoed the investigation of the high-tech ship transformed in Freire, described as one of the most far-reaching refits in the history of the Bay. The finding will serve as a basis for the international scientific community. The first vent in the depths of the Atlantic Ocean was discovered in 1977, off the coast of Ecuador.

Arab Emirates

At the beginning of this year, the Jaywun was leaving for Abu Dhabi. Its owner, the Environment Agency of the capital of the United Arab Emirates, describes it as the "most advanced marine research vessel in the Persian Gulf". Once again, the work of Freire, it is a 50-meter-long ship designed with six laboratories for thirty people. It is adapted to the conditions of the seabed in which it will mainly work: shallow waters and high salinity.

The Arab agency indicates the recently delivered oceanographic “will operate in the territorial waters of the Emirates, in the Arabian Gulf and the Sea of Oman. "It will allow us to complete studies on the marine environment and fishing in waters more than ten meters deep," they specify. The Jaywun is a local name meaning is one of the most valuable pearls for its purity.


Another recent example is the Svea oceanographic, built by Armón and delivered three years ago. During the last few weeks, she has been conducting research around the Swedish Baltic pelagic, to measure the concentration of nutrients. His last mission ended in Gothenburg.

(Source: La Voz de Galicia)