Marine research vessel to be built


The Hon Julie Bishop, MP
Minister for Education, Science and Training
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Women's Issues
 

Mr Peter Lindsay, MP
Federal Member for Herbert

Joint media release

20 October 2006

The Minister for Education, Science and Training, the Hon Julie Bishop MP and Mr Peter Lindsay, the Federal Member for Herbert, today announced that the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) has commissioned Tenix Defence Systems Pty Ltd to build a state-of-the-art research vessel.

The RV Solander will be built by Tenix to replace the RV Lady Basten which will be retired after 0 years of service.

"The Lady Basten has served AIMS well and the new vessel will take Australia's marine scientists into a new phase of leading-edge ocean research," Minister Bishop said.

"I congratulate Tenix Defence Systems on their success in securing this important contract."

Mr Lindsay, whose electorate of Herbert is home to AIMS, welcomed the signing of the contract and said it confirmed the Australian Government's commitment to research.

"This is a key investment in research infrastructure by the Australian Government and is crucial to the future activities of AIMS and their capacity to undertake research of national significance in the waters of northern and north-west Australia," Mr Lindsay said.

The new vessel will be named after Dr Daniel Solander, a Swedish scientist who was commissioned by Joseph Banks as a naturalist on board the Endeavour expedition led by James Cook, and is expected to be launchedin late 2007.

The RV Solander will operate in an area extending from the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland to Ningaloo Reef in Western Australia supporting research into the shelf ecosystems of north and north-west Australia.

The Australian Government is providing AIMS with $5.5 million from the Government's National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy towards the overall costs of the $12.5 million vessel.

Media Contacts:

Minister Bishop's Office :
Murray Hansen tel: 0417 886 155

Dept of Education, Science ‘ Training :
Media Unit tel: (02) 6240 7300
Non-media queries tel: 1300 363 079

CEO Australian Institute of Marine Science
Dr. Ian Poiner tel: (07) 4753 4478