Saturday 17 March 2018

Boaty McBoatface sinks to new depths

Useful: Boaty McBoatface. Picture: PA
Useful: Boaty McBoatface. Picture: PA

John von Radowitz

A yellow submarine dubbed 'Boaty McBoatface' has obtained "unprecedented data" from its first voyage exploring one of the deepest and coldest ocean regions on Earth, say scientists.

The robotic submersible was given the name originally chosen last year for a new polar research ship by irreverent contestants in a public competition.

Boaty dived to depths of up to 4,000m to obtain information about temperature, water flow speed and turbulence from Orkney Passage, a region of the Southern Ocean 800km from the Antarctic Peninsula.

The data will help scientists to understand the complex way mixing ocean waters affect climate change.

Professor Alberto Naveira Garabato, of the University of Southampton, said: "We have been able to collect massive amounts of data that we have never been able to capture before."

UK Universities and Science Minister Jo Johnson said: "Fresh from its maiden voyage, Boaty is delivering new insight into some of the coldest ocean waters, giving scientists a greater understanding of changes in the Antarctic region and shaping a global effort to tackle climate change."

Irish Independent

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