HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A ship building and design firm has donated a 45-foot-long catamaran to Hawaii Pacific University.
HPU said the five-year-old catamaran, from Navatek Limited, will serve as an ocean research laboratory for the school's marine science program. Its twin-hull design allows for open ocean voyaging.
HPU President Geoffrey Bannister is looking forward to all the opportunities the vessel will provide.
"This is very high technology," Bannister said. "She's very, very stable. She can do 25 knots and sit very flat in the water. She can get us out to the reserve, she can get us to the Big Island, so this opens a lot of possibilities."
The boat still has to be retrofitted with the proper research equipment, so HPU is launching a fundraising campaign to pay for the upgrades.
The university hopes it will be ready for ocean exploration by this fall.