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Children Get Onboard RV Celtic Explorer in Galway

5th December 2013
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Children Get Onboard RV Celtic Explorer in Galway

#marinescience – Over seven hundred class students from Galway, Roscommon and Mayo are visiting the RV Celtic Explorer in Galway over the next two days (Thursday 5th & Friday 6th December 2013). Having entered the "Exploring the XTRA-Ordinary Writing Competition" earlier this month, students demonstrated their awareness of Ireland's research vessel RV Celtic Explorer and their understanding of Ireland's marine life and ocean.

The overall winning entry by Ciara MacDonald, Scoil Mhuire Oranmore was a poem called A fish is what I'm destined to be. Ciara demonstrated a unique approach to her awareness of Ireland's marine life. She describes what it would be like to be a fish, starfish and dolphin and in fact maybe her destiny is to be on the Celtic Explorer.

Dr Peter Heffernan, CEO of the Marine Institute said, "The competition captured the imaginations of many students, revealing their understanding of the important influence the ocean has on our lives. Learning about our ocean at a young age fosters engagement with the sea which is a key goal of 'Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth - An Integrated Marine Plan for Ireland'. The sense of wonder and curiosity about the sea was clear from the many wonderful entries we received and I hope the students enjoy their time onboard the Celtic Explorer in Galway".

Welcoming the students and teachers to the RV Celtic Explorer, Aodhan Fitzgerald, from RV Operations at the Marine Institute, congratulated the students on their knowledge about the marine, "We're delighted to be able to show the work of our marine scientists first hand. As the research vessel is at sea for over 300 days of the year it is a welcomed opportunity to be able to facilitate the open days for so many of the students who entered the competition".

While on board the research vessel, demonstrations of how Ireland's 220 million acre seabed territory and inshore waters are mapped will be shown. Students will also learn about techniques for identifying and ageing fish in the wet-lab as well as seeing the Bridge area where the Captain Dennis Rowan will explain how the ship is run.

Students will also see the Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) Holland 1, which recently captured underwater footage and samples of novel deep sea habitats in the Whittard Canyon system. The inshore research vessel, RV Celtic Voyager will also be alongside at Galway docks and will be visited by some of the Children.

Published in Marine Science
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Marine Science Perhaps it is the work of the Irish research vessel RV Celtic Explorer out in the Atlantic Ocean that best highlights the essential nature of marine research, development and sustainable management, through which Ireland is developing a strong and well-deserved reputation as an emerging centre of excellence. From Wavebob Ocean energy technology to aquaculture to weather buoys and oil exploration these pages document the work of Irish marine science and how Irish scientists have secured prominent roles in many European and international marine science bodies.

 

At A Glance – Ocean Facts

  • 71% of the earth’s surface is covered by the ocean
  • The ocean is responsible for the water cycle, which affects our weather
  • The ocean absorbs 30% of the carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere by human activity
  • The real map of Ireland has a seabed territory ten times the size of its land area
  • The ocean is the support system of our planet.
  • Over half of the oxygen we breathe was produced in the ocean
  • The global market for seaweed is valued at approximately €5.4 billion
  • · Coral reefs are among the oldest ecosystems in the world — at 230 million years
  • 1.9 million people live within 5km of the coast in Ireland
  • Ocean waters hold nearly 20 million tons of gold. If we could mine all of the gold from the ocean, we would have enough to give every person on earth 9lbs of the precious metal!
  • Aquaculture is the fastest growing food sector in the world – Ireland is ranked 7th largest aquaculture producer in the EU
  • The Atlantic Ocean is the second largest ocean in the world, covering 20% of the earth’s surface. Out of all the oceans, the Atlantic Ocean is the saltiest
  • The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean in the world. It’s bigger than all the continents put together
  • Ireland is surrounded by some of the most productive fishing grounds in Europe, with Irish commercial fish landings worth around €200 million annually
  • 97% of the earth’s water is in the ocean
  • The ocean provides the greatest amount of the world’s protein consumed by humans
  • Plastic affects 700 species in the oceans from plankton to whales.
  • Only 10% of the oceans have been explored.
  • 8 million tonnes of plastic enter the ocean each year, equal to dumping a garbage truck of plastic into the ocean every minute.
  • 12 humans have walked on the moon but only 3 humans have been to the deepest part of the ocean.

(Ref: Marine Institute)

At A Glance – Figaro Race

  • It starts in June or July from a French port.
  • The race is split into four stages varying from year to year, from the length of the French coast and making up a total of around 1,500 to 2,000 nautical miles (1,700 to 2,300 mi; 2,800 to 3,700 km) on average.
  • Over the years the race has lasted between 10 and 13 days at sea.
  • The competitor is alone in the boat, participation is mixed.
  • Since 1990, all boats are of one design.

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