NIWA Vessels


Our vessels are world-class environmental monitoring and research platforms with the most stringent health and safety standards. We have more than 40 years of experience working in New Zealand’s marine realm and can provide our services and expertise anywhere in the world.


RV Tangaroa

RV Tangaroa is New Zealand’s only ice strengthened and dynamically positioned deep-water research vessel.

RV Kaharoa

Although designed primarily for coastal surveys, Kaharoa is capable of working throughout New Zealand's EEZ and further afield. The deployment of ocean-profiling Argo floats alone has taken it over 75,000 nautical miles.

RV Ikatere

A versatile inshore vessel, RV Ikatere is equipped with high-precision multibeam and sub-bottom profiler transducers for surveying and mapping the seabed.

Applying for vessel time

The Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE), through the Strategic Science Investment Fund (SSIF), has contracted NIWA to provide access to RV Tangaroa as a marine platform for national utilisation.

Other vessels

NIWA operates about 30 other Maritime New Zealand-certified vessels based at Bream Bay, Auckland, Hamilton, Rotorua, Turangi, Wellington, Nelson, Greymouth, Tekapo, Christchurch, and Dunedin.

Vessel induction information

RV Tangaroa induction videos for voyage participants and contractors.