The Academician Keldysh is a one-of-a-kind vessel. She’s legendary, and those who get to board her, count it as a great honor. The Keldysh is famous for having undertaken a number of both scientific and commercial projects. The ship has a large crew of over 40 members.
The Keldysh was built in 1980 in Finland and for its first seven years it was used exclusively as a scientific ship. This vessel has 17 fully equipped labs on board. In 1987 the ship became a submarine carrier, too.
This film records The Keldysh’s last voyage for the year. The crew will get to spend New Year’s Day with their loved ones before heading off again.
Many important scientific research projects are taking place during this trip. The main objective is to learn more about the changes that are currently happening in the world’s oceans. This expedition is supposed to last 20 days, but it all depends on the weather. The idea is to use the Skagerrak and Kattegat straits from the North Sea to the Baltic Sea.
The ship navigates into the Arctic Circle, which is close to the Arctic Shelf. This is a territory that is currently the cause of much dispute among five nations who are staking their claims on it: Norway, Russia, The United States, Canada, and Denmark. Russia lays claims to some very large portions of the sea. According to marine law, they have a right to claim any territory that may belong to them. This is a legal way to expand the nation’s territory and an expanded territory means an increase in resources.
The shelf is actually part of the mainland that has been flooded by the sea. It’s shallow, usually between 200 and 500 meters. It’s not an inhabited piece of land, either. The main interest that these nations have in it is geopolitical.
Aboard the ship, the crew and scientists live as a large family. They all get along well, and they should because after all, this vessel is their home. Most of them prefer living on the sea and although they miss their families, they are eager to return. As a writer from Odessa once stated: The sea is like a woman— hard to be with yet impossible to be without.