Research Vessel Rates

Explanation of usage rates

Research vessel usage rates are calculated to include crew, fuel, food, standard shipboard technical services and limited port logistics. To obtain a quote for ship rates and discuss ship availability, contact the SIO Ship Scheduling Office.

Projected Rate

Projected rates are used to estimate costs for shiptime in following calendar years. Due to the long lead times and volatility of costs, projected rates may differ from provisional and final rates.

Provisional Rate

Federal law requires that we charge all federal users the same rate for similar service. This rate cannot exceed the rate charged to non-federal users for the same service. The SIO federal day rate is determined as the actual operating costs for the year, divided by the number of operating days.

Because a final rate cannot be known until the end of the year, we charge users a provisional rate at the time of their cruise, which is based on our best estimate of our anticipated costs and number of ship days. At the end of the year we calculate an actual (final) rate, and ship users are issued an invoice to settle their account.

Fixed Rates

To eliminate the uncertainty inherent in provisional rates, we offer the option of using a fixed rate (as opposed to the provisional rate) for ship time. The fixed rate enables transactions to be completed without having to wait until the end of the calendar year for a final invoice.

Smallest billable unit

SIO observes the standard UNOLS practice of charging ship use per operating day, which is any calendar day or fractional calendar day at sea or away from home port.

Departure and arrival times: Revelle, Melville, New Horizon

When operating from San Diego, SIO vessels depart port at 0800 and arrive at 1600. For all other ports, SIO vessels depart at 1600 and arrive at 0800.

Departure and arrival times: Robert G. Sproul

R/V Robert G. Sproul is billed on a 24-hour day basis (as opposed to a calendar day basis), with a one day minimum. For example, a trip that departs San Diego at 0800 and returns the following calendar day at 0700 will be billed for one day's use.

Mobilization charges

Mobilization and demobilization are not charged if carried out in San Diego. In other ports, these days are charged according to the standard usage rate.

Standard Technical Services

SIO ship rates include general-purpose shipboard technical support as described by the U.S. National Science Foundation Guidelines for Oceanographic Technical Services, NSF Publication 04-052. This support is provided by SIO Shipboard Technical Support (STS), and includes the services of STS technicians ashore and at sea. STS personnel conduct the maintenance, calibration, scheduling, logistical assistance, and at-sea supervision of instrumentation and shared-use equipment available to aboard SIO research vessels.

For any questions please call the SIO Ship Scheduling Office (858) 534-2841.

Bruce Appelgate, PhD
Associate Director, SIO

Nancy A. F. Wilson
Manager, Office of
Contract and Grant Admin., SIO