IPF team for the Arctika Observatory has visited the French research ship Antea

While preparing the IPY 2007-2008 Arctika Obervatory mission, the IPF team went to Dunkerque to visit a small european research ship. The Antea is is a 35m long catamaran belonging to the French Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD).

The Antea is equipped with a high technology lab mainly devoted to fisheries research. It can accommodate 10 scientists for missions lasting up to one month.

Although Antea is typically operating in tropical areas, discussion with the crew yielded valuable technical insights on how to ensure a good balance between the ship maintenance, scientific work and media communication while being stuck in the ice.

The systems discussed included:

  • Appropriate structures to anchor containers on the outside bridge;
  • a "sharp stern" to allow easy sailing in the sea ice;
  • a "moon pool" to give direct access to the sea water for scientific gear;
  • the importance of designing a wet and a dry lab distinct from each other;
  • a good compatibility between the navigation and scientific devices.