G.O Sars: The Most Advanced Research Vessel in the World

Research Vessels (RVs) have are a vital cog in the underwater oceanic explorations. As such it is a natural occurrence about RVs undergoing a lot of development and technological upgradations.

GO Sars, a Norwegian research vessel is a lingering testimony to this concept of advancements to the marine research vessels.

GO Sars

Named after a pioneering Norwegian life scientist, the concept of this survey ship was developed as a result of collaboration between the Bergen University and the Institute of Marine Research. In its own right, the marine research vessel is of a radical variance from its existing contemporaries.

In the almost 10 years of its existence, the survey vessel has come to be utilised in myriad sub-water operations ranging from open-oceanic fishing, sampling of underwater planktons and intensive seismal researching.

Credits: Institute Of Marine Research
Credits: Institute Of Marine Research

However the most distinguishing feature of the ship is its negligible – almost nil – noise emissions which in figures translates to a 99% curtailing in the emissions. Post its launching, the GO Sars replaced its predecessor and namesake as the leading survey vessel for the Institute of Marine Research and the Bergen University.


  • The research vessel measures 77.5 metres lengthwise with a breadth of 16.4 metres
  •  The ship has gross tonnage of 4,067 and DWT of 1,308 tonnes with a depth of 6.2 metres
  • Go Sars offers a maximum speed of 17 knots
  • Dual power supply of diesel-electricity generating over 8,000 megawatts


  • The Norwegian shipbuilding company FSM (Flekkefjord Slipp and Maskinfabrikk) was given the contract to build the vessel
  • The RV is equipped with laboratories (15) to aid researching operations without any tangible delay
  • The vessel also boasts of technologically advanced windlasses, communication and navigation systems. These include high-definition cameras, cranes, SONAR systems and echo-resounding equipments

 Noteworthy Explorations

Since its commissioning in the late 1990s and its launching in 2003, the vessel has undertaken several important oceanic exploratory navigations.

  • In the year 2004, immediately after its launch the survey vessel was a part of the Middle Atlantic Ridge exploratory operations carried out by MAR-ECO. The exploration was mainly to research about the existence and presence of life-forms in this oceanic geography.
  • In the year 2009, the RV explored the Northern circle of the Arctic in order to carry out exploration of the ecological system in the geographic arena.

References: discoverychannel, uib, imr

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