Australasian Science: Australia's authority on science since 1938

Southern Surveyor: Stories from Onboard Australia's Ocean Research Vessel

By Michael Veitch

Michael Veitch dives into Australian marine research in his new book about the former CSIRO Marine National Facility research vessel Southern Surveyor.

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

It’s a funny thing writing a book: you spend all that time alone in a darkened (if you write at night, like I do) room: just you and your head, nutting out a story, tapping away into the night. Then you give it away and a few months later – it’s ripped from its cosy little womb and exposed into the searing light of day, as well as the public’s gaze.

That’s where I’m at now, with the recent release of a book about the former CSIRO Marine National Facility research vessel Southern Surveyor. Thankfully however, it’s been a pretty easy transition, as quite a few of the wonderful scientists and technicians have gotten back to me to say “hi,” and “thank-you”. Oh, and also to correct a couple of minor errors! Sorry guys!

The book is really a tribute to the value of Australian marine science, centred around the wonderful, much-loved vessel in which so much of it took place. Being a complete science hopeless (don’t ask how I did at physics at school) I thought it was going to be a tough ask, but it turned out to be a joy and a privilege meeting so many scientists, crew and support staff from around Australia that have done such wonderful work adding to our knowledge of our oceans, and really, the world.

I have been asked to choose three scientists out of the many I met over the course of writing Southern Surveyor, which I think is a grossly unfair, not to...

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.