The Tech

Ship Location

E Pacific Ocean

E/V Nautilus

Exploration Vessel (E/V) Nautilus is an efficient 64-meter exploration vessel with berthing for 17 permanent crew members in addition to 31 berths for members of the rotating Corps of Exploration. The ship is equipped with a Kongsberg EM302 multibeam echosounder and two remotely operated vehicles (ROVs), Hercules and Argus. E/V Nautilus has a data lab and wet lab for processing digital data and physical samples. As part of the Ocean Exploration Trust’s effort to share expeditions with students, public audiences, and colleagues, we utilize telepresence technology to stream live video from the ROVs and various locations aboard the ship in real time to the Nautilus Live website.


  • Built 1967, Rostock, Germany
  • Length 64.23 meters (211 feet)
  • Beam 10.5 meters (34.5 feet)
  • Draft 4.9 meters (14.75 feet)
  • Tonnage 1,249 gross, 374 net
  • Range 24,000 kilometers (13,000 nautical miles) at 10 knots
  • Endurance 40 days at sea
  • Speed 10 knots service, 12 knots maximum
  • Fuel Capacity 330 cubic meters
  • Propulsion Single 1,285 kilowatt (1,700 hp) controllable pitch main thruster; 280 kW bow tunnel thruster; 300 kW jet pump stern thruster
  • Ship Service Generators Two 585 kVA generators, one 350 kVA generator
  • Portable Van Space One 20-foot van
  • Complement 17 crew; 31 science and operations
  • Flag St. Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Heavy equipment
    • Dynacon 421 ROV winch with Rochester A06063 1.73 centimeter (0.681 inch) diameter cable
    • DT Marine 210 winch
    • Bonfiglioli knuckle-boom crane, 2–6 ton capacity, two extensions
    • Two airtuggers, SWL 900 lbs each
    • A-frame, SWL 8 mtns
    • Rescue boat davit with SWL 0.9 mtn
    • Oceanscience UCTD 10-400 profiling system; max depth 1,000 meters

Telepresence Technology

  • VSAT 2.4 meter axis stabilized Sea Tel 9711 uplink antenna capable of C- and Ku-band operation of up to 20 Mbps (C-band circular or linear)
  • Real-time Video Streaming 4 Haivison X Encoders designed for streaming live video via satellite to the Inner Space Center ashore
  • Cameras Two Sony BZR-H700 high-definition pan/tilt/zoom cameras mounted to view the aft deck and port rail; one BZR-H700 in the control vans; Marshall VS-570 PTZ cameras in the wet lab and in the ROV hangar
  • Communications
    • Ship-wide RTS Telex intercom system for real-time communications between ship and shore
    • Handheld UHF radios are interfaced with the RTS intercom system for deck, bridge, and Control Room communications
    • Telephone interface is available through a Rhode Island exchange for real-time collaboration between scientists ashore and on the ship
    • Full Internet connectivity from shipboard LAN and wifi
    • KVH TracPhone-v7 for redundant bridge communication, providing telephone and IP service

Data Processing & Visualization Lab

  • Area 44.5 square meters (480 square feet)
  • Workstations Seven workstations for science manager, data loggers, navigators, educators, data engineers, satellite engineer, video engineer; seafloor mapping data processing; flexible bench space

Rack Room

  • Area 17.3 square meters (185 square feet)
  • Data Storage 16 TB online storage for non-video data; 150 TB disk storage for video data
  • Emergency Communications Iridium phone, KVH phone
  • Electronics Workbench 80 cu ft of storage

Production Studio

  • Area 12 square meters (130 square feet)
  • Camera Remote controllable high-definition Sony BRC-H700, Canon FX-305 for live deck television broadcasts and interactions

Wet Lab

  • Area 19 square meters (204.5 square feet) with 5-meter-long (16-foot) stainless steel worktop
  • Refrigeration
    • Panasonic MDF-C8V1 ULT –80/–86°C scientific freezer, 0.085 cubic meters (3 cubic feet)
    • Science refrigerator, approximately 0.57 cubic meters (20 cubic feet)
  • Hazmat
    • Fume hood
    • HAZMAT locker for chemical and waste storage
    • Carry-on, carry-off chemical policy

ROV Hangar

  • Area 24 square meters (258.3 square feet)
  • Power 110/60 Hz and 220/50 Hz available
  • Personal Protective Equipment Hard hats, PFDs, high voltage gloves
  • Lifts 2 × 2-ton overhead manual chainfall lifts
  • Storage Storage for spares and other equipment

ROV Workshop

  • Area 18 square meters (193.8 square feet)
  • Tools Complete set of hand tools, cordless tools, electrical and fiber optic test equipment, mill-drill combination machine
  • Storage Storage for spares and other equipment

Control & Imaging Vans

  • Area 28 square meters (301.4 square feet)
  • Workstations Nine; typical configuration for ROV operations: two to three scientists, data logger, Hercules pilot, Argus pilot, navigator, video engineer, educator
  • Video Storage Two Omneon Mediadecks (MDM-5321 and SMD-2200-BB) for video recording and storage, 2x LTO-6 archive media drives