By Lauren Heesemann
Monitor National Marine Sanctuary
We held an open house of the SRVx, or RV-8501 this weekend and it was a great success! About 200 people who happened to be on the island of Ocracoke came aboard to learn more about the boat and the Battle of the Atlantic Project.
Dr. Nathan Richards explains some collected data to the public during an open house of the RV-8501. (NOAA)
We decided to hold an open house last year when we found out how curious the public was about the NOAA research vessel that was docked in the small harbor. Any time the RV-8501 was in Silver Lake, the harbor on Ocracoke Island, people would take pictures of the vessel or come by to ask questions of the researchers or crew. So, we decided to choose a day for people to come aboard and have a better look for themselves.
We wanted to do the same thing this year. We set up our ROV (Remotely Operated Vehicle), researchers explained the project with pictures and data, and the crew gave tours of the bridge, living quarters, and engine room. The public had a chance to see the berthing where the bunkbeds are stacked three beds high, the shower that barely allows room to turn around in, and the galley where all the kitchen tools have to be secured so they don't fly off the counters in rough seas.
While the accommodations may not be five-star, the RV-8501 has everything that the researchers and crew need for a few days at sea!