Research expeditions

At any one time scientists and technicians from the UK community 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 & Institution Location Duration in days (begins) Aim

Robert Harris

Oregon State University

Panama Basin



January 2015


Oceanographic and Seismic Characterisation of heat dissipation and alteration by hydrothermal fluids at an Axial Ridge (OSCAR)

The objective of this cruise is to obtain a new suite of conductive sub-seafloor heat flow data to better understand the nature of conductive and convective heat transfer in young sedimented crust of the Panama Basin. This heat flow data, when combined with existing heat flow data will provide a better estimate of total hydrothermal heat loss from the crust in the study region.

Further information can be viewed here

Cruise Principal Scientist & Institution Location Duration in days (begins) Aim

Andy Henson

National Oceanography Centre, Southampton



Iberian Abyssal Plain/Canary Basin


January 2015

Sea Acceptance Trials (SAT) for the Ship Fitted Winch System

Following the winch repair period in Aalesund, Norway, the RRS Discovery will sail from Southampton on January 7th to commence around 48 days of deep water Sea Acceptance Trials (SAT) for the ship fitted winch system. This trials programme will be split into three legs DY047; DY048 and DY049 and all ship fitted winch wires, cables and ropes will be streamed behind the ship at least once during the trials, with all wires, cables and ropes streamed down to the drum.


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: 230115 12:00

Zone: Z-1

Subj: PIM DY047


Pos: 33 15N  22 06W

Co:  050

Spd: 6kts


Wx: ENE 14kts. Fine and clear. Mod seas.

Status: Winch trials Madeira Abyssal Plain/Canary Basin.

Streaming Trawl Wire for spooling/lay tests.

Intentions: Plasma Rope trials to follow.


Fuel ROB: 343t


DTG: 230115  07:00L

Zone: Z -6

Subj: PIM JC114


Posn: 06 47.9N  082 51.4W

Co: 143T

Spd: 12.0Kts

Wx: Light Airs. slight Sea and short low Swell.

Status: On passage to SR01 to deploy first of four OBS in this set ETA 1630/23rd.

Intentions: After deploying the first set of 4 OBS then move to a new area further to the west and deploy a further 25 OBS.

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.



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