Precondition for the exploration of the seas are modern research vessels with the appropriate scientific equipment. Therefore, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) contributes to the cost of construction and operation of research vessels.
Research Vessel SONNE
The research vessel SONNE is used as research platform by practically all marine research disciplines and is mainly deployed in the Pacific.
An expert committee appointed by the BMBF evaluates the submitted expedition proposals according to scientific criteria. The Project Management Organization Jülich then arranges an expedition schedule based on a priority list which also provides for science-policy aspects. The application of the research permits and the container transport are the responsibility of the applicants.
Research Vessels METEOR and MARIA S. MERIAN
These two research vessels are supervised by the Deutschen Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) (German Research Foundation). The BMBF bears 30 percent to the operating expenses of each vessel, for which the Project Management Organization Jülich is responsible. The applications for shiptime on both vessels are evaluated by the Senate Commission on Oceanography.
The prioritization is followed by the assessment and the planning of the expeditions. Details of the expedition plan are worked out in cooperation with the logisticians of the METEOR Operations Control Office. The Project Management Organization Jülich represents the BMBF in meetings of the Senat Commission on Oceanography.