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The research vessel MARIA S. MERIAN is a multidisciplinary research platform equipped with outstanding facilities that allow the use of all modern methods of investigation of the ocean floor, the water column and the atmosphere. The size of the vessel and its ice-strengthened reinforced hull allow it to operate not only in the Mediterranean and the Atlantic but also in subpolar areas. With accommodation for 23 research personnel, the MARIA S. MERIAN is Germany's fourth largest research vessel.
With the METEOR, the MARIA S. MERIAN is the second research vessel funded by the DFG together with the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) as a central research facility. The DFG bears 70% and the BMBF 30% of the operating costs for the vessel. The investment costs were shared by the BMBF and the coastal states of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Schleswig-Holstein, Bremen and Hamburg. The MARIA S. MERIAN has its home port at the Institute for Baltic Research in Rostock-Warnemünde (IOW) and is owned by the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. The Review Panel on Research Vessels (GPF), set up by the BMBF and the DFG, uses scientific criteria to decide which cruise proposals will be included in the cruise planning. The operation of the vessel is managed by the German Research Fleet Coordination Centre at the Institute of Geology, University of Hamburg.
By funding the research vessels as central research facilities, the DFG ensures a fair distribution of ship time according to scientific quality criteria. The MARIA S. MERIAN, like the METEOR, is available to all marine researchers in Germany in accordance with generally accepted rules.
The Advisory Board of the MARIA S. MERIAN deals with questions about the scientific utilization of the vessel and questions relating to its operation. In particular, it appraises the annual budget and decides on issues of ship deployment in special circumstances, taking into consideration the various interest groups.
Appointed scientific members: