Chartwell Marine has designed a hybrid research catamaran for the University of Vermont (UVM) in the US.

Built in collaboration with the university and New York-based Derecktor Shipyards, the R/V Marcelle Melosira will serve as a floating classroom and laboratory on Lake Champlain, providing hands-on educational programmes.

The R/V Marcelle Melosira

Source: Derecktor Shipyards

The R/V Marcelle Melosira

“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 programmes 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 university’s Rubenstein Ecosystem Science Laboratory.

The 19m catamaran has been designed to feature low emissions and low fuel burn rates, all the while providing a stable and manoeuvrable platform for research with the ability to tow trawls, sleds, and plankton nets. On board will be scientific equipment, small remotely operated vehicles and sediment sampling devices.

With dual control stations, a large interior space and expansive exterior aft deck area, the aluminium vessel is capable of operating in wave heights of up to 1.5 metres.

The R/V Marcelle Melosira is named after Marcelle Leahy, wife of retired senator, Patrick Leahy, who championed the Clean Water Act and helped secure significant project funding.

“Senator Leahy has shown unwavering support for environmental research and education,” 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.”