Croatian shipbuilder Brodosplit, part of DIV Group, has cut the first steel for Quark Expeditions’ new polar expedition cruise ship.
The steel-cutting ceremony for the 13,500 gross ton newbuild was held in Split on January 28, 2019.
Ordered in 2018, the polar ship newbuild from Quark Expeditions is said to be the first of its kind, combining new technology, long-range operational capability and advanced safety systems. The vessel has been designed by LMG Marin AS.
“Every aspect of the ship has been built with one thing in mind: continuing to redefine what is possible in polar adventure,” Andrew White, President of Quark Expeditions, said.
Scheduled for delivery in 2020, the vessel will be 128 meters long and 21.5 meters wide and will be able to accommodate up to 200 passengers. Among other features, it will have an interior Zodiac hangar and four embarkation points, as well as dual helicopters with simultaneously operable helidecks.
The ship’s numerous innovations are expected to minimize its environmental footprint, including a water treatment system, a waste handling system, a heat recovery system that recycles excess energy back into the ship, and the use of entirely recyclable materials to construct it. The dynamic positioning technology will also mean no need to anchor – avoiding damage to sensitive seabed ecosystems.
The new vessel will go on sale in spring 2019, with the launch of its inaugural Antarctic season in 2020-2021.