IT’S BRITISH Week in Panama with a free showing of the Iconic Yellow Submarine movie in Centennial Park on Thursday Mar. 16 one of the highlights of the celebrations.
The timing is a happy coincidence for the UK Embassy organizers as Boaty McBoatface a real British yellow submarine sets sail this week on a historic research voyage.
Boaty McBoatface, the unmanned vessel whose name was the result of an internet joke, has “arguably one of the most famous names in recent maritime history”, says The Guardian.
“Boaty McBoatface” came into being after Britain’s Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) called on members of the public to vote on a name for a new polar research ship.
However, a tongue-in-cheek comment by BBC Radio Jersey presenter James Hand, who joked on air that the £200m ship should be christened Boaty McBoatface, snowballed into an online campaign, with more than 124,000 votes cast for it.
Put in an awkward position, the NERC decided to give the polar research vessel the far more sensible name RSS Sir David Attenborough, in tribute to the world renowned naturalist who turned 90 last year.
As a compromise to appease disappointed voters, it gave the public’s choice to a mini submarine instead.
However, while Boaty McBoatface owes its name to a joke, its first mission could have a serious impact on research into climate change in Antarctica.
The autonomous underwater vehicle departs from Chile on Friday, attached to the the polar research ship RSS James Clark Ross,
From there, Boaty McBoatface will be transported to Antarctica, where it will descend into the Orkney Passage, an 11,000ft-deep gap in an underwater ridge in the Southern Ocean.
Its mission is to investigate water flow and evidence of warming in the deep waters which help regulate the temperature of the planet.
Lead scientist Professor Alberto Naveira Garabato, from the University of Southampton, told Sky News: “We will measure how fast the streams flow, how turbulent they are and how they respond to changes in winds over the Southern Ocean.
“Our goal is to learn enough about these convoluted processes to represent them in the models that scientists use to predict how our climate will evolve over the 21st century and beyond.”