Derecktor delivers hybrid research catamaran to UVM

(MAMARONECK, N.Y.) — Derecktor Shipyards has delivered a hybrid research catamaran to the University of Vermont (UVM). The innovative vessel, named R/V Marcelle Melosira after Marcelle Leahy, wife of retired U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy – who championed the Clean Water Act and helped secure significant funding to support the project, the University of Vermont, and the state – will serve as a floating classroom and laboratory, enabling advanced research operations and hands-on educational programs.

“Sen. Leahy has shown unwavering support for environmental research and education that benefits Vermont and Vermonters,” said UVM President Suresh Garimella. “His decades of commitment to the improvement and preservation of water quality in the Lake Champlain watershed have made our region healthier and our future brighter. The senator’s stewardship of the research vessel project will allow UVM researchers to continue their important work well into the future.”

Derecktor Shipyards photo

Designed by Chartwell Marine and built in collaboration with UVM and Chartwell, the 64-foot vessel has been crafted to fulfill the functions outlined by UVM’s Rubenstein School of Environment & Natural Resources. These functions include low emissions, low fuel burn rates, a stable and safe platform for research, high maneuverability, and the ability to tow trawls, sleds, and plankton nets. The vessel will also facilitate the launch and recovery of scientific equipment, small remotely operated vehicles (ROVs), and sediment sampling devices.

R/V Marcelle Melosira is equipped with dual control stations to maximize operability, and offers a large interior space and an expansive exterior aft deck area. Constructed of aluminum, the vessel is designed to operate on Lake Champlain in up to 5-foot significant wave height conditions, providing a tough, reliable and valuable research platform for UVM.

“The new hybrid electric vessel is one of the first of its kind for research and teaching, fully equipped to expand UVM’s cutting-edge world-class research, deliver hands-on education programs to students of all ages, and welcome the public to learn about the mysteries, wonders, and significance of our great Lake Champlain,” said Jason Stockwell, director of the Rubenstein Ecosystem Science Laboratory.

Derecktor has established itself as an industry leader in the development and construction of hybrid vessels, and R/V Marcelle Melosira is the fourth such build using hybrid systems supplied by BAE.

“We are gratified to be part of this project and to continue to contribute to the advancement of hybrid vessel technology,” said Mark Donahue, director of development, Derecktor Shipyards New York. “This unique research vessel will not only serve as a platform for scientific exploration but also foster the education of future scientists and engineers.”

– Derecktor Shipyards

By Rich Miller