The Marine National Facility RV Southern Surveyor.

The Marine National Facility RV Southern Surveyor.

Australia's Marine National Facility: exploring ocean ecosystems, geology and climate

The Marine National Facility supports research across Australia's vast ocean territory and adjoining oceans.

  • 15 May 2009 | Updated 8 April 2013

Australia’s Marine National Facility is owned and operated by CSIRO and overseen by an independent Steering Committee appointed by the Federal Minister for Science.

It is Australia’s only dedicated blue-water ocean research facility, and enables Australian marine scientists and their international collaborators to undertake world-class research to address important questions of national interest.

Access to Australia’s Marine National Facility is open to Australian researchers and their international collaborators.

Climate, fisheries and geoscience

Examples include research to quantify the major role of the ocean and atmosphere in influencing Australia’s climate, improving management of marine ecosystems and their influence on our fisheries, and understanding the origins of the Australian marine continent and how this relates to our mineral resources and territorial claims.

The facility also enables Australia to provide a regional contribution to large international research programs to address these questions in a global context. It offers:

  • an ocean research vessel, presently the 66m Southern Surveyor (soon to be replaced by the 94m Investigator)
  • a suite of scientific equipment and instrumentation
  • a collection of more than 27 years of publicly available marine data
  • the expertise and systems required to safely and effectively manage ocean research and support research vessel users.

Applying for use

Access to Australia’s Marine National Facility is open to Australian researchers and their international collaborators. Research voyages are allocated on the basis of scientific merit and national benefit through a competitive and internationally peer-reviewed process. 

Australian marine researchers are invited to submit applications for use of Southern Surveyor.

More information on the facility, including voyage plans and how to apply for sea time, can be found on the Marine National Facility website: Marine National Facility - Southern Surveyor

View the progress of the new research vessel Investigator.