The Polar Class 2 vessel will be able to sail to remote arctic regions
Shipbuilder Vard has handed over polar exploration vessel Le Commandant Charcot to French cruise company Ponant.
The flag exchange ceremony took place on the ship’s helideck, attended by executives including Arnt Inge Gjerde, yard director of Vard Søviknes; Attilio Dapelo, general manager of business unit cruise at Vard; and Mathieu Petiteau, new building director at Ponant.
“We have built this fantastic ship in the good spirit of Vard with excellent teamwork, dedication and solution-oriented mindset,” said Gjerde. “We are proud to deliver this one-of-a-kind vessel to Ponant, fully tested and tuned for polar explorations.”
Le Commandant Charcot was developed by Ponant, design firm Sterling Design International and ice-going vessel specialists Aker Arctic in cooperation with Vard. She is a Polar Class 2 vessel, which means she can operate year round in moderate, multi-year ice conditions. This will allow the ship to explore the remote polar regions, including the Geographic North Pole, Northeast Greenland’s National Park, the Svalbard archipelago, the Charcot and Pierre I islands and the Larsen Ice Shelf.
The vessel features a hybrid power plant powered by LNG fuel and electric batteries and is equipped to sort and treat all waste produced onboard. She is also fitted with facilities and equipment for researching the water, air, ice and biodiversity in polar regions. The ship will be able to accommodate 245 passengers in 123 staterooms, as well as 125 crew members.
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