Aurora Expeditions’ second X-Bow hulled vessel launched

Sylvia Earle earmarked for sea trials in July

Aurora Expeditions‘ second Ulstein-bow equipped ship, Sylvia Earle, has been launched at the CMHI shipyard in Haimen, China.

According to Ulstein Group, Sylvia Earle was launched in China at a ceremony that took place on 18 March 2021, coinciding with the keel laying of Ocean Odyssey, both ships under construction for the US-based SunStone Ships and chartered to Aurora Expeditions and Vantage Cruise Line respectively.

Steel-cutting for the 132-passenger ship Sylvia Earle commenced just 12 months ago in March 2020, followed by the keel-laying in July. Sea trials have been earmarked for July ahead of delivery to Aurora Expeditions in October.

Sylvia Earle's stern prior to water launch | Source: Ulstein Group

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Each of the decks on the Polar Class 6 expedition vessel are named after pioneering female conservationists; Dr. Carden Wallace AM, Joanna Ruxton, Sharon Kwok and Bernadette Demientieff – along with a deck dedicated to
oceanographer and explorer, Dr. Earle herself.

The new purpose-built ship Sylvia Earle is slated to begin operation in November 2021.

For more information, see

Sylvia Earle expedition ship launch in China | Source: Ulstein Group
Sylvia Earle rendering, courtesy of Aurora Expeditions

Meanwhile, SunStone Ships’ next two newbuilds, Ocean Victory (chartered by Albatross Expeditions/Victory Cruise Line) and Ocean Explorer (chartered by Vantage Cruise Line), are also nearing their completion at the CMHI yard.

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