Norsk flagg   

FF Helmer Hanssen

Photo for infrastructure

R/V «Helmer Hanssen» is a stern trawler with a hull built to ice class DNV ICE-1C, refurbished as a research vessel. UiT, the Institute of Marine Research, Bergen and the Univerity Center in Svalbard (UNIS) are the main users of the vessel. Other national and international organisations or groups are welcome to charter the vessel.

R/V «Helmer Hanssen» (earlier R/V «Jan Mayen») was designed by Skipsteknisk A/S and built at Danyard a/s in 1988. R/V «Helmer Hanssen» is a stern trawler with a hull built to ice class DNV ICE-1C. During 1992 she was redesigned by Skipsteknisk a/s and refurbished at Båtbygg a/s as a research vessel. Since June 17, 2011 The University of Tromsø is the owner of  R/V «Helmer Hanssen». 

Research facilities

The R/V "Helmer Hanssen" is a multipurpose vessel, designed for fishery and marine biological, geological and oceanographic surveys in open and ice covered waters (1-2 m drift ice). The range of investigations include fish resource assessments, hydrographic and trawl surveys, geological bottom sediment sampling and acoustic registrations of the sediment layers below the sea-bed. R/V "Helmer Hanssen " is equipped with modern instruments, and has especially designed features for improved acoustic surveying and bottom sediment sampling.

Research activities

  • Shrimp/fish stock assessments
  • Geological investigations (bottom cores, echosounding, accustic surveying)
  • Plankton surveys
  • Fishing gear trials and underwater surveys
  • Marine mammal surveys
  • International workshops
  • Naval training courses

Most research activities will be carried out in the Barents Sea and in ice covered areas around Svalbard.

Acoustic transducers:

  • Echo sounder (fishfinding) Simrad split beam ES38-B, s.b. ES120-7
  • Echo sounder Scifish multibeam transducers
  • Bottom penetr. echo sounder ORE 137 (16 elements)
  • ADCP sounder RD-VM 75
  • Sonar sounder Furuno 180 kHz (CSH 70)

Electronic instrumentation (research)

  • Sonar (fishfinding) Furuno colour scanning CSH 70
  • Echosounder (fishfinding) Simrad ER-60 (18/38/120 kHz)
  • Bottom penetration echo sounder Geopulse 5430A, Geopulse 5210A, EPC 9800
  • Current profiler RDI ADCP-75 (Acoustic Doppler Cur. Pro.)
  • Scanmar CGM Various sensors (height, spread, temp,..)
  • Hydrographic equipment Seabird 911 Plus with compact rosette (12 btl.), fluorescence-meter
  • Satelite comm. Thrane & Thrane Inmarsat-C, Mini-M satellite telefon

Laboratories and stores

  • Data processing centre, 55 m² This is the operation and analysis centre for all acoustic instruments and work stations. The room is also suitable for lectures and meetings.
  • Diving store This is the storage room for diving equipment. Filling stations for bottles 200/300 bar (Bauer Capitano)
  • Netmending room, 43 m² Suitable for construction and repair of fishing gear sections and other gear. Some space for net storage.
  • Isotope room, 5,5 m² Room with special equipment for the treatment of radioactive samples.
  • Wet laboratory, 30 m² Initial treatment of samples including sediment cores, water samples and plankton. Samples are transported to the laboratory by an elevator
  • Hydrography lab., 13 m² From this room the CTDO and hydrographic sampling instruments are operated via a hydraulic gate in the side of the vessel.
  • Main lecture room, 40 m² Lecture room which accomodates 30. Equipped with overhead, dias etc.
  • Lecture room, 23 m² Separated from the main lecture room by sliding doors. Working stations for scientific staff/students
  • 1. Laboratory, 30 m² Separated from the lecture rooms by sliding doors. Equipped for further analysis and preparation of geological, plankton and water samples
  • 2. Laboratory, 19 m² For analysis and preparation of fish, shrimps etc.
  • 3. Laboratory, 24 m² Preliminary handling of fish and shrimp samples. Length measuring and weighing stations
  • Freezing storage, 4 m² Storage of smaller fish/shrimp samples
  • Cool storage 13+3,5 m² Storage of different types of samples (geol.core sections, plankton, etc.)
  • Refrigerators 1 x 30°C and 1 x 80°C

Special equipment

  • Transducer-centreboard A 3,5 x 1,0 m section can be lowered 3,5m below normal keel level. Carries all acoustic transducers
  • Sediment core sampler 15 m long sediment cores can be taken from depths to 4000 m. Instruments can be operated through a trunk in the vessel
  • Boxcores Different sizes are operated by cranes and trawl winches.
  • Diving equipment Compressor, 200/300 bar
  • CTDO-winch Capacity of 4000 m cable
  • Hydrography winch Capasity of 3000 m cable
  • Dredge winch 1 x 3 tonnes, 3500 m wire (Ø 12 mm)
  • Trawleye winch Capasity of 2400 m cable (Ø 11,4 mm)
  • Trawl systems Double 50 m long trawlways for bottom trawling and 4 sweepline winches
  • Net drum 1 x 25 tonnes (12,5 m³) for pelagic trawls
  • Fishing gears Commersial sizes of shrimp and fish trawls, bottom and pelagic sampling trawls, plankton trawls
  • Fish/shrimp plant 10,5 tonnes of fish or shrimps can be plate frozen/24 hours + fresh/iced fish/shrimps
  • Crow's nest Placed 15 m above sea level on the roof of the bridge. Heated, 360° view
  • High pressure compressor
  • Airguns
  • Streamers
  • 3D seismic
  • Streamer winch
  • Positioning solution for 3D
  • Depth control for 2D seismic

Technical specifications and equipment

General arrangements:

  • Bridge deck: The wheelhouse covers 100 m² and windows give almost a 360° view. Modern instruments, all winch controls at the rear, radio room and lounge.
  • Boat deck: Data processing centre of 55 m², 4 cabins, laundry.
  • Forecastle deck: 7 cabins, galley, mess/lounge, food storage, laundry, ventilation room, diving room, lifeboat and liferafts, m.o.b.-boat.
  • Shelter deck: 4 cabins, sick-bay, laundry, 33 m² wardrobe, drying room, 43 m² net storage/net mending room, 50 m x 4,5 m double trawlways, mechanical workshop, elevator for samples to main deck, 3 laboratories covering 49 m².
  • Main deck: 6 cabins, 40 m² lecture room, 23 m² lecture room, 2 laboratories covering 50 m², 1 wet laboratory of 24 m², 3 cool/freeze storage rooms covering 10 m², 200 m² fish/shrimp handling/processing plant.
  • Below main deck: Engine room, 500 m³ freezing hold, 200 m³ cooling hold, 150 m³ dry cargo storage.

Main features

  • Length o.a. 63,80 m
  • Length p.p. 55,55 m
  • Breadth mid. 13,00 m
  • Depth to maindeck 5,95 m
  • Depth to shelterdeck 8,55 m
  • Accomodation 35 persons
  • Freezing hold capacity 500 m³
  • Cooling hold capacity 200 m³
  • Dry storage capacity 150 m³
  • Fuel tank capacity 574 m³
  • Freshwater capacity 24 m³
  • Evaporator 8 tonns/24h
  • Speed max: 16 knots
  • Service speed 12,5 knots
  • Gross Tonnage 2052
  • Class DnV+1A1 ICE 1C

Main engine information

  • Maker Wärtsila Vasa
  • Type 8R32E
  • Power 3000 kW/4080 Bhp at 750 rpm
  • Main gearbox Volda ACG850/PF600
  • Propeller Wichmann CP Propeller
  • Generator Leroy Somer at 500 LB91, 2280 kvA at 1800 rpm, PTO from main gearbox

Auxiliary engine information

  • Maker Cummings
  • Type KTA-38-G2
  • Power 1086 Bhp at 1800 rpm
  • Generator Leroy Somer LSA-50-M4 945 kVA at 1800 rpm

Electronic equipment

  • Radar A Furuno FR2010D
  • Radar B Furuno 810 DS
  • Echosounder Furuno FCV 140 color
  • Radio telephone Skanti TRP 8750D with telex TT 1600
  • Satelite com. system Marconi Ocean ray 2
  • Radio receiver Sailor R2022
  • VHF Sailor RT2047/2 RT 2048
  • Direction finder Furuno FD 525
  • Watch-receiver Sailor R501
  • Weather faximile Furuno Fax-208A
  • Loran C Furuno LC90
  • GPS Furuno GP-500/GP-300
  • Satelite navigator Furuno FSN 70
  • Gyro/autopilot Plath navigat 8 and Plath navipilot 2 connected to magnetic compass
  • Trawl (catch) control Scanmar CGM-05
  • Log/econometer Ben Galatee 400
  • Air/seawater temp. T.Gregersen/TI 11D
  • Calling system Vingtor VMP 32, Vingtor VSP 11, Vingtor Hailer system
  • Mobile VHF 2.units

Winching equipment

  • Type: A/S Hydraulik Brattvaag, Datasynchro
  • Trawl winches 2x40 tonnes
  • Outhaul winch 1x6 tonnes
  • Gilson winches 2x15 tonnes
  • Sweepline winches 4x10 tonnes
  • Dumping winch 1x2,3 tonnes
  • Anchor winch 1x8 tonnes

Special equipment

  • Ice gallows HTB 26 (Langsten)
  • Deck cranes SBG Hydraulic a/s, 1x4 tonnes at 14 m, 1x2 at 9 m
  • Steering gear Tenfjord, Barkemeyer rudder
  • Freshwater generator Alfa Laval Zeta JWP-26-C80
  • Freez. hold equipm. Capacity: 10 m³, Sabroe
  • Ventilation Semco
  • Lifesaving equipment Viking Jørgensen & Vik
  • External lights, lanterns etc. IBAK
  • Air compressors Sperre 30 bar, 2x28 m³/h starting/working air
  • Engine room halon firefighting Unitor
  • Separators Alfa Laval Zeta
  • Bowthruster Brunvoll 495 Bhk
  • Bilge separator Heli Sep.

Processing equipment

  • Freezing equip.type Technotherm
  • Handling equip.type Carnitech, Odim and Baader
  • Plate freezing capacity 10,5 tonnes/24 hours
  • Temp. in freezing hold -30°C

Lifesaving equipment

  • Lifeboat (dry cargo version) 1 x Jørgensen & Vik, 30 persons, 21'
  • Lifeboat (m.o.b. version) 1 x DSB/420 Aquasave, 8 persons
  • Liferafts 3 x Viking, 16 persons + 2 x Solas, 20 persons
  • Lifesuits & belts 35 x Helly-Hansen E/305/4


  • Number of cabins 21 (single/double) + sick-bay
  • Number of beds 40 (11 crew)
  • Wc/shower In every cabin
  • Training room 1 ergocycle, 1 multitrainer etc.
  • Laundry 4 x washing machines and dryers
  • Saloon Situated on forecastle deck and covers 35 m² -leather sofa/chairs, TV, video, radio, cass.deck
  • Other seatings Seating space in the wheelhouse and the data processing centre
  • Mess Selfservice. Seating capacity 18
  • Meals Warm/cold dishes at 08.00, 14.00 and 20.00

FF Helmer Hansen GA-plan

GA Helmer Hanssen fra 2016

Contact information

For further information please contact Johnny Johansen.

Type: Vessels
Unit: The Norwegian College of Fishery Science Faculty of Biosciences, Fisheries and Economics

Page editor: Johansen, Johnny