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The experimental research ship Sea Orbiter has been given the full go ahead with the futuristic $43 million ship set to hit the waves as early as next year. The 50m high research ship will utilise technologies from solar power to wind turbines and is completely self-sustainable.
Originally the lovechild of French designer Jacques Rougerie the SeaOrbiter is unique as a vessel in that nearly 50 per cent of its mass is actually underwater allowing for constant interaction with the ocean.
Above the waterline however is the majority of the fin-like hull housing living-quarters, research labs and of course the observation deck and bridge. In total the vessel is well over the height of Nelson's Column and is designed to remain at see for incredibly long periods of time.
With partners like Microsoft already on board the Sea Orbiter is likely to be more suited to a science fiction film than reality and with it's entirely unique design it's hard not to be impressed.