Welcome aboard SOLACE!

The Southern Ocean Large Areal Carbon Export voyage aboard Australia's RV Investigator was successfully completed on Friday, 15 January 2021.

The six week voyage was aimed at developing an approach to quantify the changing effectiveness of CO2 sequestration by the ocean's biological pump using remote-sensing by satellites and autonomous vehicles.

The images & stories below are by the scientists & crew on board.

The SOLACE project includes contributions from CSIRO, the University of Tasmania’s Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS), the Australian National University (ANU), Curtin University and the Australian Antarctic Program Partnership (AAPP).


Scientists capture detailed snapshot of Southern Ocean’s role in carbon uptake

By AAPP | 15/01/2021

Australian researchers today returned from a six-week marine science voyage investigating the critical role of ocean life in capturing atmospheric carbon.

SOLACE team arrives back in Hobart after a successful 6 week voyage

By AAPP | 15/01/2021

After a 1000 nautical mile steam from polar waters, the SOLACE voyage finishes today, as we dock in Hobart.

Our seabird entourage

By AAPP | 15/01/2021

Unlike whale-watching, birding never fails to deliver.

At War with a Machine to Measure Life from Gas

By AAPP | 13/01/2021

The delicate balance of the natural world – what’s being created and what’s being lost – can largely be traced through the signature of the gas that’s left behind.

24 Hour Party Plankton

By AAPP | 10/01/2021

They are microscopic, exhibit funky shapes and wear many different colours. Welcome to the amazing world of phytoplankton!

Gels reveal particle types exported to the Twilight Zone

By AAPP | 07/01/2021

Polyacrylamide gels are providing a sneak peek at who’s responsible for exporting carbon to the ocean’s interior.

The gaping ‘mouth’ of the Triaxus as it surfaces for recovery onto the RV Investigator. Instruments such as the LOPC (Laser Optical Plankton Counter, yellow body on the front, top) are located all over the rectangular carbon fibre frame.

CTD profiles and Triaxus sections set the scene for SOLACE sites

By AAPP | 05/01/2021

Two of the main workhorse instruments on board are the CTD and the Triaxus. The information obtained by these two instruments helps the SOLACE team make important calls on the suitability of a site for a longer term multi-week occupation.

A Whale of a Christmas Tail

By AAPP | 01/01/2021

Christmas on the SOLACE research voyage turned out to be a real cracker.

5 things I didn’t know as a first time voyager

By AAPP | 31/12/2020

An IMAS PhD student and first time voyager gives an honest and up front account of her first three weeks on board RV Investigator.


By AAPP | 26/12/2020

A nomadic scientist’s reflections of home, from the remote Southern Ocean.