Boaty McBoatface, one of the most famous yellow, little submarines is back from the first of its three missions. According to its research team, the submersible came back with a treasure trove of data on the Weddell Sea and the AABW.
Boaty McBoatface Makes A New Splash
This yellow unmanned submarine became famous back in 2016 as the Natural Environmental Research Council released a public campaign for naming a new UK polar research ship. Although the vessel itself was eventually called the Sir David Attenborough, authorities decided to also use the name most voted by the public.
So, they gave this title to an unmanned, autonomous Autosub Long Range (ALR) submersible. Despite its quite silly name, Boaty is part of a very serious research, and according to the latest reports, it is now back from its first mission.
Boaty’s maiden voyage started in May 2017 and took it on an over 110 miles long and seven weeks long journey. It also had it going as far down as 13,100 feet deep. The submersible traveled through the Orkney Passage as it started from the Weddell Sea and headed towards the Antarctic Peninsula.
Thanks to Boaty McBoatface, scientists now have new data on the Antarctic Bottom Water (AABW), one of the coldest, abyssal ocean waters on the planet.
“Fresh from its maiden voyage, Boaty is already delivering new insight […], giving scientists a greater understanding of changes in the Antarctic region and shaping a global effort to tackle climate change,” stated Jo Johnson, the Universities and Science Minister.
Scientists will now be able to analyze this data and hopefully map oceanic currents. This could help better understand how these affect the climate.
Thanks to its ability to travel at great depths, Boaty can provide a much more detailed picture of the deep ocean waters.
Boaty McBoatface’s first mission has been deemed a great success, and the research team is looking forward to studying the gathered information.
Image Source: Wikimedia