The renowned French research vessel, Marion Dufresne II left Damen Shiprepair Dunkerque (part of Damen Shiprepair & Conversion) in northern France on 28 July having recently undergone sea trials and a complete renovation. Delivered on time, the oceanographic research vessel set sail for the Port of La Réunion where she will resume her logistic and scientific journey to the French Southern and Antarctic Lands.
“The excellent cooperation between the yard and the vessel’s crew was important in this project’s successful planning, coordination and execution. We rebuilt a large part of the vessel within 4 months to extend her life by 20 years. The client was satisfied with our performance, cooperation and the end result,” explains Head of Marketing & Sales at Damen Shiprepair Dunkerque, Khalil Benjelloul.
Mr Benjelloul sums up the work carried out by the yard. “We replaced the vessel’s most important scientific apparatus, the multi-beam sonar. We scrapped the existing equipment, rebuilt the hull and installed a new gondola and control room. Furthermore we completely renewed the ILOT capstan, a system used to take sea water samples, and installed new equipment. The hull has been blasted and repainted as well as some of the ballast tanks. The vessel’s accommodation areas have been redone in cooperation with the client’s subcontractor, this included laboratory facilities used by IPEV scientists. Marion Dufresne II can accommodate 114 passengers or scientific researchers and 46 crew.”
The multi-purpose vessel owned by French administration “Les Terres australes et antarctiques françaises” (TAAF) and managed by CMA CGM, supplies French southern islands 4 months a year, and carries out oceanographic research 217 days per year under the responsibility of the Institut Polaire Paul-Emile Victor (IPEV). Operating out of the Port of La Réunion, the vessel transports passengers and supplies to the French islands of the Indian Ocean and performs scientific works in all ocean conditions, but for iced covered. Marion Dufresne II is now returning to the French Southern and Antarctic Lands to continue her logistic work and scientific research.
Besides her research and scientific capabilities, this multi-purpose vessel has a heli-deck and can be used as a supply vessel to transport containers and fuel to remote areas.
The client selected Damen Shiprepair & Conversion following a competitive tendering process. After careful consideration of the vessel’s requirements, Damen decided to have the Dunkirk yard in northern France undertake the project.