Research expeditions

At any one time NOC scientists and technicians can be at sea on numerous vessels. Discover where they are and what they are trying to achieve.

Latest expedition

RRS James Cook

Cruise Principal Scientist Location Duration in days (begins) Aim
JC103 David Smeed

Sub Tropical North Atlantic



April 2014



Since April 2004, researchers have developed and maintained an observing system for the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) at 26.5N under the Rapid Climate Change programme and now the Rapid WATCH programme.

These programmes investigate how the changes in the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) will affect us globally. 

The overall intention during this expedition is to service the RAPID-MOC 26N mooring. The MOC is the most important dynamical quantity to determine ocean transports of heat, freshwater, carbon, and other properties, and is central to all considerations of rapid climate change and the role of the thermohaline circulation.

Cruise blogs for RAPID and the OSNAP fieldwork. 

RRS Discovery

Cruise Principal Scientist Location Duration in days (begins) Aim

Richard Stoop



May 2014

Winch Remedial Work

The overall objective of DY020 is to operate, commission and prove the ships scientific winch and over side handling systems for delivery of science support. The key activities are to operate and test all the winches (except the MFCTD), as well as all the wires, cables and ropes over all the stern handling systems to evaluate the overall capability using steel weights only at this point.


Ship position

This map shows the positions of the NOC operated vessels RRS Discovery and RRS James Cook.  While every effort is made to keep this map up to date sometimes postion updates are not possible.

Update from the ship (PIM)


DTG: 240714  08:00

Zone: Z+1

Subj: PIM DY025

Posn: 49 42N  005 00W  (17' South of Lizard Point)

Co: 069

Spd: 10kts

Wx: NE 10kts. Fine and clear. Low seas.

Status: On passage to Southampton. ETA Pilot 0700 25-JUL-14.

Intentions: Stop at 10:30 this morning to deploy ROV dummy frame from Bullhorn Boom at stbd side position


DTG: 240714  07:00

Zone: Z

Subj: PIM JC106

Posn: 50 16.3N  008 20.7W

Co: Auto Pos

Spd: Auto Pos

Wx: N x 10Kts. Fine and clear. Slight sea and swell

Status: Setting vessel up to conduct Vibro Core. Last 24 hours conducted

7 Vibro cores and 2 x Swath Surveys

Intentions: Vessel will commence a Swath transect towards the NW for approx 24 hours. During this transect suitable coring sites will be identified.

Other expeditions


Learn about the research expeditions that are taking place upon the NOC based research vessels during 2014. Read more about 2014's expeditions


Learn about the research expeditions that are taking place upon the NOC based research vessels during 2013. Read more about 2013's expeditions


Learn about the research expeditions that took place upon the NOC based research vessels during 2012. Read more about 2012's expeditions

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Information for…


The outputs of research generate new knowledge about the oceans. Transferring scientific knowledge to support business and industry is an important part of our NOC remit.



Our research is intended to tackle the big environmental issues facing the world. Research priorities will include the oceans' role in climate change, sea level change and the future of the Arctic Ocean.



The University of Southampton and the University of Liverpool both offer a range of highly regarded undergraduate and post-graduate degrees in Ocean and Earth Science.



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Delivery Partners

Delivery Partners helping to provide marine science national capability.


Marine Science Community

The creation of a wider association of Universities and research institutions to support wider engagement of the NOC with the marine science community is now underway.



The National Oceanographic Library is a national resource for the UK marine science community.


Principal scientists

All updated information for cruise participants can be found using the Marine Facilities Planning website: