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Intelligence, Research, and Oceanography Ships of the Republic of the Philippines

It is a little known fact that the Philippine government operates a fleet of intelligence, research, and oceanography vessels. These ships conduct a variety of inter-related activities that have military applications including oceanographic, geologic, geophysical, geographic and bathymetric surveys as well as Exclusive Economic Zone(EEZ) demarcation, reconnaisance, and intelligence gathering.

The "BRP Presbitero", an oceanographic vessel operated by NAMRIA. This ship together with its sister, the "BRP Ventura" was built by Factorias Vulcano, a Spanish shipbuilder.

Table 1: Intelligence, Oceanography, and Research ships of the Philippines:
Ship Name Agency Length (meters) Width (meters) Displacement (tons) Speed (knots) Year built Equipment
Arinya Coast & Geodetic Survey --- --- 245 --- 1962 ---
Alunya Coast & Geodetic Survey --- --- 245 --- 1964 ---
Researcher Bureau of Fisheries & Aquatic Resources 44.5 8.2 419 9 1966 38 khz echo sounder
Atyimba Coast & Geodetic Survey 49.1 10.1 686 9 1969 2 khz echo sounder
Sardinella University of the Philippines, Visayas 40.2 8.8 411 11 1980 fisheries sonar
Explorer Mines & Geosciences Bureau 55 9.4 500 12 1984 geological sonar
Fort San Antonio Department of National Defense --- --- --- --- 1993 intelligence equipment
Fort Abad Department of National Defense --- --- --- --- 1993 intelligence equipment
Bantay Kalikasan --- --- --- --- --- 1995 ---
DA-BFAR Bureau of Fisheries & Aquatic Resources 60 12 1,156 13 1999 ---
Presbitero National Mapping And Resource Information Authority 52 --- 1,170 --- 1999 SeaBeam 2100 Deepwater Multibeam Echosounder
Ventura National Mapping & Resource Information Authority 52 --- 1,170 --- 1999 SeaBeam 2100 Deepwater Multibeam Echosounder


Schematic diagram of the "BRP Presbitero".


In addition to "BRP Fort San Antonio", and "BRP Fort Abad", the other Philippine government research vessels also carry Philippine Navy crewmen and officers either for ship operation or for guard duties.

Front view of the "M/V DA-BFAR", an oceanographic fisheries research vessel built by Astilleros Gondan, a Spanish shipbuilder.

Aerial view of the "M/V DA-BFAR", an $18.52 million dollar ship that has a maintenance and operating cost of 37.40 million pesos a year(1999 estimate).




Philippine Navy Main Web Page



NOTES: "BRP Presbitero" photos copyright of Factorias Vulcano and Gonsusa. "M/V DA-BFAR" photos copyright of Tinig Marino and Astilleros Gondan.