Neeskay vessel

The R/V Neeskay offers students, faculty and scientists throughout the region the ability to study Lake Michigan year-round.

The Neeskay’s research capabilities include a full range of wet and dry lab facilities for chemical, physical, biological and geological sampling and analysis, including Seabird CTD profiler, rosette sampler, hydrographic casts, current meter deployment, surface water temperature chart recorder, vertical and horizontal net tows, trawling, dredging, box coring and sediment sampling. The Neeskay is also equipped for support of scuba-assisted research and small ROV operations.

Contact Information

For information on rates or for scheduling information: 

Rob Paddock
Facilities and Marine Operations Manager

Captain Max Morgan
Built1953Higgins Inc.
Weight75Gross tons

Detailed Specifications

Research Capabilities

  • Full range of wet and dry lab facilities for chemical, physical, biological and geological sampling and analysis including:
    • Seabird CTD profiler
    • Rosette sampler
    • Hydrographic casts
    • Current meter deployment
    • Surface water temperature chart recorder
    • Vertical and horizontal net tows
    • Trawling
    • Dredging
    • Box coring and sediment sampling
  • Additionally, the Neeskay is equipped for support of SCUBA-assisted research and small ROV operations.

Propulsion Machinery

  • Single 340 HP Detroit Diesel 12 cylinder 71 series engine
  • Twin Disc 514-M marine gear with 3 to 1 reduction with trolling valve control
  • Propeller diameter 42″, shaft diameter 4″


  • 72 mile Furuno radar
  • KVH Azimuth 314 AC fluxgate compass
  • Sperry Mk 27 gyro-compass with autopilot
  • Northstar 951XD DGPS system with electronic charts
  • Two transducers 8 degrees and 20 degrees
  • Two VHF-FM radio telephones (call sign WY8293)

Winches and Equipment

  • Forward deck
    • One Gearmatic hydraulic anchor winch with 733 meters (2,200′) of 3/8″ cable
    • One HIAB articulated hydraulic crane
    • One Otis Oceanographic hydraulic winch with free fall capability and 460 meters (1,500′) of 1/4″ conducting cable with slipring
    • One aluminum A-frame with maximum load capacity of 2,000 pounds.
  • Aft deck
    • One Lantec two-speed hydraulic winch with free fall capability and 400 meters (1,300′) of 1/4″ cable
    • One Lantec single-speed high power hydraulic winch with 400 meters (1,300′) of 1/4″ cable
  • Hydraulic ram gallows frame on stern with 4-meter (12′) clearance under frame and 1-meter (3′) swing clearance over stern, maximum load capacity of 2,000 pounds.


  • One Northern Lights 45One Northern Lights 45 kw, 110/220 volt, single phase generator.
  • One Northern Lights 20 kw, 83 amp 110/220 volt single phase generator
  • One 11.7 amp uninterruptible power system


Length:21.6 meters (71′)
Beam:5.4 meters (17’8″)
Draft:2.4 meters (8′)
Tonnage:Displacement 62.6 tons; Gross tonnage 75 tons
Hull:Steel mono hull design. Vessel has six water-tight compartments with bilge alarm system, and bilge keels to reduce rolling effects from sea.
Official Number:512553
Built: 1953 Higgins Inc., New Orleans, LA, USA
Converted:1970 Peterson Builders Inc., Sturgeon Bay, WI; 1984 2-meter (6′) aft extension and gantry system, Hanna Marine, Lamont IL
Speed:2.5 knots trolling control, 9.5 knots cruising, 10.5 knots maximum
Range:1,400 km (750 nautical miles)
Endurance: Seven days as day boat with meals served; Four days continuous operation
Licenses: Greg Stamatelakys – 100T Master Great Lakes and inland, Able Body Seaman Unlimited, Radar Observer Unlimited, Marine Radio Operator.


  • Captain Max Morgan
  • Mate/Engineer Geoff Anderson


Full galley facilities include refrigerators, freezers, convection microwave oven, electric countertop stove and grill, temperature control, shower, two toilets, and comfortable accomodations for four scientists overnight.

Safety Equipment

  • One 25 person inflatable life raft
  • Category I 406 EPIRB
  • 20 survival suits
  • Heart Start AED defibrillator
  • Complete M.O.B. emergency equipment
  • Manual and automatic fire suppression systems
  • Complete custom-designed vessel alarm system including smoke, fire, flooding, and AC/DC detection
  • SOLAS signaling equipment
  • Emergency lighting and DC power supply
  • Three independent dewatering systems, including one 220 VAC bilge pump, one 24 VDC bilge pump, one hydraulic bilge pump with 140 GPM capacity, and one portable diesel powered dewatering pump
  • The crew of the Neeskay is trained in first aid, EAD and CPR