RV Vema

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Career
Name: 1923 SV Hussar
1934: SV Vema
1953: RV Vema
1982: SV Mandalay
Owner: 1923: Edward Francis Hutton
1934: Georg Ungar Vettlesen
1953: Columbia University
1982: Windjammer Barefoot Cruises
2013: Sail Windjammer
Operator: 1953 - 81: Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory[1]
Builder: Burmeister & Wain, Copenhagen, Denmark[2]
Launched: February 2, 1923[2]
Completed: March 1923
Identification: Official Number 7738383
Fate: presently operated by Sail Windjammer
General characteristics
Type: schooner
Tonnage: 585 GRT[2]
Length: 49.9 m (163 ft 9 in) (pp)[2]
Beam: 10.1 m (33 ft 2 in)[2]
Depth: 15 m (49 ft 3 in)[3]
Capacity: 72 passengers (as Mandalay)[3]
Crew: about 28 (as Mandalay)[3]

The research vessel Vema was a three-masted schooner of the Lamont Geological Observatory (now the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory [LDEO]), a research unit of Columbia University. The 202 ft (62 m). vessel, with her almost indestructible Swedish steel hull, became renowned as one of the world’s most productive oceanographic research vessels. The ship had been first sailed for pleasure under the name Hussar, and after its career as a research vessel entered a new career as the cruising yacht Mandalay.[2]

E.F. Hutton's luxury yacht, Hussar[edit]

Designed by Cox & Stevens and built in 1923 by Burmeister & Wain in Copenhagen for E. F. Hutton and his wife Marjorie Merriweather Post, the 585-ton luxury yacht Hussar had an iron-hull and was at its time the epitome of maritime luxury and glamour in its class.[1] In 1934 Hutton had built the Hussar (II) (later Sea Cloud), an even larger yacht than his first Hussar. In 1935, the Hussar was sold to Norwegian shipping magnate, G. Unger Vetlesen and his wife Maude Monell and renamed Vema, a combination of Vetlesen and Maude. The Vetlesens spent many pleasurable days at sea.

Vema during WWII[edit]

During World War II, Maude Monell donated Vema to the American war effort. The vessel was put into service as a merchant marine cadet training ship. The Vema was first put to use patrolling coastal waters for the US Coast Guard.[1] Having lost her glitter the vessel patrolled coastal waters. Later served as a barrack and a training ship for the United States Merchant Marine. Assigned to the US Maritime Service Training Station on Hoffman Island, her sailing area was listed as 14,000 sqf.[4] After the war she was abandoned off Staten Island until "a captain from Nova Scotia" salvaged the vessel.[1] LDEO leased the vessel in 1953 and soon bought it for $ 100,000.[1]

Research Vessel Vema[edit]

Vema started circling the globe as the first of the Lamont Geological Observatory's research vessels. Displaying a black hull, it was used to collect samples of seawater and sediment cores, measure currents and heat flows, perform underwater photography and seismic studies, and map out ocean floors. The work on the ship helped to confirm the continental drift theory. By the time of her retirement in 1981, the Vema had collected data on a record track of 1,225,000 nautical miles (2,269,000 km).[1] Notable scientists who worked aboard the Vema include Maurice Ewing, Bruce C. Heezen, Ralph (Ralphy) Roessler, J. Lamar Worzel,[5] Jack Nafe, Frank Press, and Walter Pitman, all of whose work was greatly facilitated by Marine Technical Coordinator Robert Gerard, who was responsible for the fitting and refitting of LDEO marine research vessels from the Vema through its successors, the Conrad, Eltanin, and RV Maurice Ewing, including the design and installation of numerous pieces of customized scientific measurement equipment critical to their research.

Seafloor features[edit]

Cruising yacht Mandalay[edit]

The ship was refitted again as a cruising yacht for the Caribbean under the name SV Mandalay (also Mandalay of Tortola)[2] with a sail area of > 20,000 square feet (1,900 m2).[3] The ship was operated by Windjammer Barefoot Cruises from 1982 until the operator went out of business in 2008.[11] Mandalay subsequently was purchased at auction, refurbished,and used as specialty cruise ship in the Galapagos islands off Equator by Angermeyer Cruises. The SV Mandalay is currently run by Sail Windjammer and sails weekly out of Grenada for week long cruises in the Grenadines.

Other research vessels of the LDEO[edit]

Note[edit]

The Miramar Ship Index lists the vessel incorrectly as Verna instead of Vema.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory. "Marine Operations: Vema (1953-1981)". Retrieved January 31, 2009. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Miramar Ship Index # 7738383
  3. ^ a b c d Mandalay information
  4. ^ Hoffman Island access date February 3, 2009
  5. ^ Worzel, J. Lamar (1959). "Extensive deep sea sub-bottom reflections identified as white ash". Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 45 (3): 349–355. Bibcode:1959PNAS...45..349W. doi:10.1073/pnas.45.3.349. PMC 222564. 
  6. ^ Vema (Library Association of Rockland) County
  7. ^ Heezen, B. C.; Gerard, R. D.; Tharp, M. (1964). "The Vema Fracture Zone in the Equatorial Atlantic". Journal of Geophysical Research 69 (4): 733. Bibcode:1964JGR....69..733H. doi:10.1029/JZ069i004p00733. 
  8. ^ a b "IHO-IOC GEBCO Gazetteer of Undersea Feature Names, March 2011 version; www.gebco.net". GEBCO. Retrieved 2011-11-16. 
  9. ^ Antarctic: Flying fish at the Vema seamount. accessdate=february 2, 2009
  10. ^ AMS glossary accessdate=February 2, 2009
  11. ^ Windjammer Cruises Officially Out of Business, April 2, 2008

External links[edit]