Construction of the polar exploration vessel, “Le Commandant Charcot”, has officially started
PONANT, the only French-owned cruise line and the world leader in luxury expeditions, is building an exceptional polar exploration vessel. Delivery of the new flagship, the most ambitious ever designed both in terms of travel experience and respect for the environment, is scheduled for 2021.
The vessel will bear the name of a great French explorer: Le Commandant Charcot. An explorer by vocation with a true passion for sailing, Jean-Baptiste Charcot is one of the emblematic figures of French polar expeditions. By naming its forthcoming polar exploration vessel after him, PONANT is paying tribute to this “gentleman of the poles”, a man respected by all.
The choice of name is even more meaningful given that this new ship will be fitted with the latest technology for minimising environmental impact, as well as a scientific laboratory to be used by operational and research missions on oceanographic research.
Thus, at Tulcea in Romania, home of the Vard shipyard, the Norwegian subsidiary of Fincantieri, PONANT is pioneering a new era in polar travel. Designed to be a new type of cruise ship, the vessel will incorporate all the latest innovations in environmental protection, making PONANT a world leader in responsible tourism.
Indeed, Le Commandant Charcot will be the first exploration vessel to surpass the ecological standards set out in international regulations. An electric hybrid vessel, it will be powered by Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG). Designed for intense polar explorations, and with PC2 Polar Class certification, Le Commandant Charcot will push back the boundaries of imagination, by sailing to the Geographic North Pole.
“I am proud to be involved in the inception of a project that marks the culmination of 30 years of effort. Exploring little-known lands and sharing and transmitting our passion for the sea and for nature have always been our driving forces. Our fervent desire is that our passengers, being in daily contact with scientists and experts, and meeting with the local populations, become ambassadors for the protection of these regions”, says Jean Emmanuel Sauvée CEO and Co-Founder of PONANT.