07 Aug 2019

HMS Protector prepares for polar research mission

The Royal Navy polar research ship HMS Protector is preparing for a new mission after a mapping expedition.

The HMS Protector has undergone maintenance work including upgrades and repairs to engines, systems, and machinery on board ahead of a new polar research mission in the frozen seas. The ship had returned from an extensive mapping and research mission in the polar region as well as the South Atlantic and Africa.

HMS Protector has been staying in Middlesborough Teeside Docks during the maintenance work. The crew underwent a short, intense training course after work was finished to prepare for the upcoming deployment.

Commander Adam Ballard said: “I am justifiably proud in what my team have achieved over the past month. There have been some extremely long days in getting the ship ready for sea, and then into a difficult training period with FOST.”

“It’s only been made possible with the ship working together as a close knit team.”

The Royal Navy’s FOST training organisation led overboard drills, navigational exercises, gunnery, fending off simulated attacks, dealing with casualties, dealing with floods, putting out fires, and winching exercises. Following the training, FOST deemed the Protector and its crew were ready to return to performing research in the polar regions.

There will be some additional training before the ship returns to the antarctic seas. Previously, HMS Protector studied icebergs and helped scientists study sea levels on a five-year mission in the Antarctic as well as circumnavigating the Antarctic seas and conducting vital research into glaciers and improving navigation in the area.

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