"Name our ship!" This was the call from the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) in an online poll soliciting names for a U.K. polar research vessel. The whimsical suggestion captured the public imagination and rocketed the humorous moniker into first place, trouncing even recommendations honoring beloved British icons like Sir Richard Attenborough and recently deceased musician David Bowie. The British Antarctic Survey (BAS) currently boasts two polar research vessels — a stately pair of ships named for famed arctic explorers: the Royal Research Ship (RRS) James Clark Ross, used primarily for conducting oceanographic research, and the RRS Ernest Shackleton, which transports cargo, passengers and fuel to polar research destinations.
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