Silver Ships delivers research boat to NOAA

(MOBILE, Ala.) — Silver Ships has announced the recent delivery of a customized Ambar series vessel to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

The NOAA vessel is a custom-built Ambar 6 meter (AM600), designed to be operated from NOAA oceangoing ships. At just under 28 feet in length, with a hull length of 20 feet 5 inches, this vessel is powered by two Mercury SeaPro 115-hp engines, with an 80-gallon fuel tank. A beam of 8 feet 10 inches, 22-inch draft, a trailer, and a boat cradle for deck storage make this custom vessel meet the needs for NOAA.

Silver Ships photo

Ambar series vessels, part of the rigid hull inflatable boat (RHIB) family, were originally designed to meet the demands of the North Sea as rescue boats. Over the past 15 years, the Ambar boats have been used in many applications, from fire rescue service to patrol and research missions.

The original “hybrid” air-and-foam collar has proven to be popular and gives the Ambar series superior stability, making the boats virtually unsinkable. The NOAA vessel was specifically designed with a lift located in the center of the boat to safely deploy from large ships working offshore.

This vessel is projected to be a part of two to four cruises during the upcoming summer months. The NOAA vessel is a key element in collecting needed research on specific marine life including sea turtles and whales. The customized turtle-tagging platform allows for research biologists to efficiently hand-tag turtles that surface the water, and the folding bow pulpit allows researchers to get over the water, assisting in biopsy-darting large whales. The observer platform plays a key role at tracking these surfaced animals, being elevated 8 feet in the air, with a clear view of the water.

At just under 28 feet, this vessel allows the perfect transportation to the shelf break, getting close enough to research beaked whales in their natural habitat, and collect data.

“As a Silver Ships team, we were overjoyed to be able to assist NOAA in expanding their research with a customized vessel built for all the needs they were hoping for,” said Shawn Lobree, Silver Ships’ federal contracts manager. “With the custom, unique add-ons this vessel holds, we are confident NOAA will be able to strengthen their research and leave a lasting impact on our environment.”

– Silver Ships

By Rich Miller