Chancellor Merkel christens new German research ship

JULY 14, 2014 — German Chancellor Dr. Angela Merkel has had a busy weekend. Before flying to Brazil to see Germany win the FIFA World Cup on Sunday, she was in Rostock-Warnemünde on Friday to christen Germany's new deep sea research vessel, Sonne.

Some 300 guests attended the ceremony at Meyer Werft's Neptun Shipyard subsidiary.

The new research vessel has a length of 116 meters, is 20.6 meters wide and is characterized by a high energy efficiency, gaining a Blue Angel award for its eco-friendly design.

In addition to its crew of 35, the ship can accommodate 40 scientists. Its main areas of  research will be the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is scheduled to enter service in January 2015, replacing a 44 year old predecessor.