• Credit: Steber International
    Credit: Steber International

A new regional Australia-built defence science research vessel has been launched.

R/V Ginan, a 12m vessel, is part of a $1.8 million project to support Defence’s maritime research.

The boat was constructed by a local Australian boat builder, Steber International, based at Taree, NSW. It will be used for science and technology trials in coastal waters, predominantly in the Sydney Harbour and Jervis Bay regions of NSW.

”We have a long history of working with Steber International and have been supported by Cummins South Pacific, Olectric Systems and a number of small service providers in the mid-north NSW coast area,” Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price said.

“This has enabled us to strengthen Defence capability. While the vessel will initially focus on the development and testing of maritime robotic and autonomous systems, its versatility means it will also be used to support a range of programs, including hydrographic survey and ocean sciences.”

The vessel will replace the much-loved timber Army Work Boat, which has served Defence Science for more than 30 years.

Member for Lyne Dr David Gillespie said R/V Ginan was named after the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander word Ginan, representing a dilly bag filled with special songs of knowledge.

“For the Wardaman people of Northern Australia, it also refers to the fifth brightest star in the Southern Cross,” Dr Gillespie said.

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