Technology Projects > Vessel Management System > Introduction

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VMC Building

NIOT/MoES is having a fleet of Research Vessels for ocean exploration & technology demonstration purposes. Research Ships under NIOT are versatile ocean observing platforms equipped with advanced scientific equipments and mechanical handling equipments for technology demonstration and oceanic observations, which are on par with International Standards. Vessel Management Cell [VMC] team of NIOT is responsible for operations, maintenance & technical management of research ships and scientific equipments onboard. VMC ensures successful implementation of Ocean related programmes by providing a Technically Suitable Platform for various research institutes under MoES in conjunction with the Joint Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee [JSTAC] approved cruise schedule. Currently there are four vessels under NIOT viz., ORV SagarNidhi, ORVSagarManjusha, CRV SagarTara & CRV SagarAnveshika. These vessels operate year round, supporting Ministry of Earth Sciences, Govt. of India funded projects.

Research ships play a vital role in scientific studies relating to ocean /atmosphere/ technology and etc. It is important to suitably prepare ships for numerous scientific activities keeping safety utmost priority. VMC consists of a team of Engineers who support the research ships on a day to day basis, to ensure the vessels continue in the delivery of data and are where they are supposed to be at a given date. They also collect scientific data and compile the data collected during the expedition. VMC team has implemented a number of low-cost, innovative, green technology solutions on research ships of NIOT, which has helped huge cost savings on maintenance, increased operational time and thereby helping the scientific users and shipping industry widely.

Ocean Research Vessel ‘SagarNidhi’ is India’s pride and a state of art ice-class research vessel of the sub-continent. It is built with Dynamic Positioning System [DP-II] of 5m accuracy, with an overall length of 103.6m and draft of 4.2m. She can accommodate 30 scientists with an endurance of 45 days. SagarNidhi is the ‘first Indian flagged research ship that reached the 66°S latitude, facing 11 storms and 73 nm/hr wind speed, witnessing nature’s harshest conditions and awesome breath-taking sceneries.’ ORV ‘SagarNidhi’ is catering to the ongoing and new technology demonstration and ocean exploration programmes of MoES such as deployment/recovery/operations of Remotely Operable Vehicle [ROV], Autonomous Coring System [ACS], Autonomous Underwater Vehicle [AUV], Ocean Observation Systems [OOS] [viz., Tsunami buoys, OMNI buoys, Met Ocean buoys, RAMA moorings, ARGO floats], scientific expeditions to the Indian Sector of the Southern Ocean and various other research and technology development activities planned by the Ministry. In addition, SagarNidhi has carried out numerous Search and Rescue [SAR] operations of National importance viz., SAR operation of missing aircraft AN 32 of Indian Air Force Off-Chennai, SAR operation of missing Dornier Aircraft CG-791 of Indian Coast Guard Off-Chidambaram and Recovery of sunken torpedo/underwater system from deep sea off-Vizag by SagarNidhi which resulted in huge appreciation from PMO/ICG.

Research Vessel ‘SagarManjusha’ is a real work horse of MoES, being utilized by various National Labs, Academic & Research institutes, universities involved in ocean and allied sciences extensively.

Coastal Research Vessels Sagar Tara and SagarAnveshika joined MoES fleet after successful and satisfactory harbour & sea trials in August 2019 & February, 2020 respectively. Both ships are about 43m in length, 2.5m draft, with a capacity to accommodate 8 scientists and 12 crew for an endurance of 15 days. Both ships are equipped with the advanced scientific equipment and latest navigational equipment with a role of measuring oceanographic and atmospheric data within the Exclusive Economic Zone [EEZ] of India.

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Upgradation of deep sea winch on board Sagar Nidhi