To boldy go where no man (or woman) has gone before…
Ok maybe we have been there, done that, but are doing it tomorrow? The Beagle Project is!
“In 2009, the bicentenary of Charles Darwin’s birth we will launch a sailing replica of HMS Beagle. An icon of scientific progress, she will circumnavigate the globe in Darwin’s wake, crewed by aspiring scientists and researchers. They will carry out original research both at sea and on land, updating Darwin’s observations, breaking new scientific ground and relating the adventure of science to enthuse a new generation of young students.”
This is an ambitious project with deep relevance to modern science. Sure, they’ll be retracing the big D’s footsteps around the world. That’ll be big for sure. But the Beagle Project‘s founders aren’t satisfied with that. No, they are going to be doing some serious marine science, education and public outreach on the Beagle 2.0.
On the scientific end they will have PCR and DNA Sequencing equipment on board. They will be sampling and sequencing their way around the world using Metagenomics and DNA barcoding approaches. They will also be soliciting proposals from scientists to conduct their own research on board as well. Public outreach and education from K-College will be a important focus of the Beagle Project, especially in the many developing countries that dot the path of the Beagle.
This is a highly noble effort. Could the Beagle be evolution’s shining ship that will sail the message of science across the world? I hope so, but it needs your help. The timber is seasoning in storage as we speak. They only need enough funds to start construction, which will take a little over a year. You can even get your name on a plank. You can donate funds directly by paypal or by purchasing a lovely item from Beagle Project Store. I’ve already purchased a t-shirt and 2 onesies!