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U.S. Department of State

Department Seal

Notice to Research Vessel Operators No. 73

Subject: Norwegian Research Clearances and Port Calls.
Released by the Department of State, Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs, January 20, 1988.


The Government of Norway has informed us that it does not wish to regulate legitimate research activities of civilian controlled vessels even though those vessels may operate within continental shelf limits or in disputed maritime zones such as those around Jan Mayen Island. This pertains to research which involves only the "water column" over the sea bed and is not directed towards exploitation of sea bed mineral resources, and does not prejudice Norwegian maritime claims around Jan Mayen or in the Barents Sea. While formal clearances will not be necessary for such research, the Government of Norway wishes to be notified of such research activities and proposed vessel tracks.

Presumably, formal clearance requirements will continue to apply in the territorial sea and on the continental shelf.

Also, different rules apply to military vessels, i.e. vessels flying a military flag and captained by a uniformed officer. This apparently applies to U.S. Coast Guard, NOAA and U.S. Navy vessels, but does not apply to military owned vessels operated by an academic institution and captained by a civilian.

The attached form should be completed for either notification or clearance requests, and submitted to this office with the usual minimum three months lead time.

Port calls not involving a research notification or clearance are still subject to approval at least 14 days in advance, as discussed in NTRVO #31, February 24, 1977. However, such clearance requests should be submitted to this office and not directly to the American Embassy in Oslo. Port calls in connection with notifications or research clearances should be reported on, and will be processed by using the notification/ clearance form. In addition, once a port call has been approved the vessel must notify the port authorities not later than 24 hours before arrival in port.




1. Name of research ship

Cruise No.

2. Dates of sailing

3. Operating Authority

4. Owner (if different)

5. Particulars of ship:

Overall length
Maximum draught
Bto tonnage
Call Sign

6. Crew

Name of Master
No. of Crew

7. Scientific Personnel

Name and address of Scientist in charge
No. of Scientists

8. Geographical area in which ship will operate (With reference in latitude and longitude).

9. Brief description of purpose of cruise.

10. Dates and names of intended ports of call.

11. Any special logistic requirement at ports of call.


1. Name of research ship

Cruise No.

2. Dates of sailing


3. Purpose of research and general operational methods

4. Attach chart showing (on an appropriate scale) the geographical area of the intended work, positions of intended stations, tracks of survey lines, positions of moored/seabed equipment.

5. Types of samples required, e.g. Geological/Water/Plankton/Fish/Radioactivity/Isotope.

and methods by which samples will be obtained (including dredging/coring/drilling).

6. Details of moored equipment

Dates laying
Dates recovery

7. Explosives:

(a) Type and Trade Name
(b) Chemical content
(c) Depth of Trade class and stowage
(d) Size
(e) Depth of detonation
(f) Frequency of detonation
(g) Position in latitude and longitude
(h) Dates of detonation

8. Detail and reference of

(a) Any relevant previous/future cruises

(b) Any previously published research data relating to the proposed cruise. (Attach separate sheet if necessary)

9. Names and addresses of scientists of the coastal state in whose waters the proposed cruise takes place with whom previous contact has been made.

10. State:

(a) Whether visits to the ship in port by scientists of the coastal state concerned will be acceptable.

(b) Whether it will be acceptable to carry on board an observer from the coastal state for any part of the cruise and dates and ports of embarkation/disembarkation.

(c) When research data from intended cruise is likely to be made available to the coastal state and if so by what means.



List of all major        |            |            |
Marine Scientific        |            |            |
equipment it is          |            |            |
proposed to use          |            |            |
and indicate waters      |            |            |
in which it will         |            |            |
be deployed.             |            |            |
                         |            |            |
Fisheries research       |            |            |
within Fishing Limits.   |            |            |
                         |            |            |
Research concerning      |            |            |
Continental Shelf        |            |            |
out to coastal           |            |            |
states' margin.          |            |            |
                         |            |            |
DISTANCE FROM COAST      |            |            |
    Within 4 NM          |            |            |
    Between 4-12 NM      |            |            |
    Between 12-50 NM     |            |            |
    Between 50-200 NM    |            |            |

[end of document]


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