X-BOW ship to be named after Australian mountaineer and Aurora’s founder

The Greg Mortimer's tapered bow will allow it to pierce waves with much greater stability The Greg Mortimer's tapered bow will allow it to pierce waves with much greater stability

Australian-owned Aurora Expeditions announced that its new ship, which will use patented X-BOW (pronounced ‘crossbow’) technology, is to be named Greg Mortimer to honour the company’s founder.

Mortimer, who was awarded the Order of Australia Medal for his mountaineering exploits, founded Aurora Expeditions with his wife, adventure travel specialist Margaret Werner. Named after Sir Douglas Mawson’s ship, Aurora made its first journey to Antarctica in 1992 and is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year.

As reported here in May, the 104mtr ice class 1A ship being built in China will launch in 2019. Itineraries are due for release early next year.

The main advantage of the Ulstein X-BOW is its ability to pierce waves with much greater stability than a traditional bow.

Because it uses less fuel to get through the waves, it also improves fuel efficiency and reduces air emissions.

‘I’m both honoured and humbled to share my name with a vessel that marries the pioneering heritage of Aurora Expeditions with bold technology, aggressive design and innovation,’ Mortimer said. ‘I’m tickled pink that Aurora continues to be at the forefront of exploration.’

Aurora Expeditions md Robert Halfpenny said the company is delighted its new ship will bear the Greg Mortimer name.

‘It is a proud name that will ensure Greg’s legacy and vision for small group voyages continues to burn brightly into the future,' Halfpenny said.

Posted 22 November 2017

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Helen Hutcheon

Australasia correspondent