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Vard continues construction of the “REV Ocean” after two years

The Norwegian Vard shipyard group has resumed work on the 182.9 m expedition yacht “REV Ocean” after a two-year break.

Vard plans to make a few significant changes to the mega yacht, which is designed as a floating research facility, as has now been announced[ds_preview].

This is because the yacht planned for Norwegian industrialist Kjell Inge Røkke’s REV Ocean Foundation, which was originally due to be delivered by the shipyard in 2020, was previously too heavy.

It was only in February of this year that an arbitration court in Ålesund upheld Røkke’s complaint that the “REV Ocean” built by Vard had become heavier than contractually agreed. This led to a significantly higher draught. The Vard shipyard, a subsidiary of the Italian state-owned Fincantieri group, had to make a number of design changes to prevent Røkke from withdrawing from the contract or taking over the ship from the shipyard at a considerable discount. As early as 2021, there were initial reports that the total cost of the project could amount to more than $500 million due to complications and delays.

Vard and REV come to an agreement

As the REV Ocean Foundation has now announced, an agreement has been reached with shipbuilder Vard regarding completion. In order to ensure the functionality of the ship, it will be extended by 12 meters and modified in certain areas. This will also create more space and greater scientific capacity in the main hangar area.

Vard anticipates a delivery date in February 2025, meaning that the 195-meter-long yacht will be ready for use from the fourth quarter of 2026 once the scientific interior has been completed. Vard will carry out the conversion in the shipyard’s own facilities at a suitable location in Norway. The “REV Ocean” is currently located in Søviknes, just north of Ålesund. The final completion work will then be carried out at a location yet to be determined, which will be closer to the delivery location of the Vard shipyards. According to the REV Ocean Foundation’s initial plans, the final outfitting of the yacht was to be carried out at Lloyd Werft Bremerhaven in 2000.

In the meantime, the shipyard has also published new renderings of the yacht which, in addition to the lengthening of the ship, also show a reduction in the size of the upper deck and the removal of the glass observation lounge, which will certainly lead to a further reduction in weight. A few years ago, GL Yachtverglasung from Halstenbek near Hamburg installed the GLY-MarineCobond glass product specially developed for these applications in this project, including for the observation lounge on deck 9. At more than 11 m wide and over 2.8 m high, the front pane in this observation lounge was the largest curved insulating glass pane that has ever been installed on a superyacht.

The “REV Ocean” was commissioned by Norwegian billionaire Kjell Inge Røkke, who set up a foundation for this purpose in 2017 and financed it. He joined the Giving Pledge campaign, in which signatories promise to donate more than 50% of their wealth to charity. The organization aims to connect the fields of science, business and politics. The abbreviation REV in the name stands for Research Expedition Vessel.

The yacht was designed by the well-known designer Espen Oeino. The almost 183-metre-long steel hull was initially built at the Vard shipyard in Tulcea, Romania, within 18 months and then towed to Norway for further outfitting work.

The “REV Ocean”, designed in accordance with the IMO Polar Code for operations in Arctic and Antarctic waters, is primarily a research vessel and is intended to play a special role in marine research as it is equipped for missions that cover the entire marine ecosystem. The equipment will include scientific trawls, sonar systems, laboratories, auditoriums and classrooms as well as submarines. Four Wärtsilä main engines with an output of 2,700 kW enable a maximum speed of just under 18 knots. At a cruising speed of 11 knots, the effective radius is 21,120 nm. (CE)

REV Ocean neues Aussendesign Rendering REV Ocean 1
The new rederings for the “REV Ocean” (© REV)

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Copyright: Ecakrdt

Caption: The "REV Ocean" in August 2022 (© Eckardt)