Skip to main content Skip to secondary navigation

Te Vega

Main content start


Welcome to the website for the RV Te Vega, the ship that served Stanford Oceanographic Expeditions 1963-1968. She inspired the lives and careers of both faculty and students lucky enough to participate in her 19 cruises. The goal of this website is both to record and to share the history of this era.

The Te Vega was donated to Hopkins Marine Station of Stanford University by Harold Miller in 1962 and was sold in 1969, to be replaced by an old tuna clipper, the Proteus. Professor Rolf Bolin directed the ship’s program, for research and training of graduate students in marine biology, until he retired in 1967. The National Science Foundation funded research and maintenance on both ships until 1972.


Cruises         History         Reunions          Other Links to Te Vega      


Stanford@SEA 2003-present  (the reincarnation of the 'Te Vega experience')



SU Receives Schooner For 'Floating Classroom'

Under a long-term charter agreement Hopkins Marine Station of Stanford University will acquire the Schooner Te Vega for use as a “floating classroom” in marine biology and oceanography, according to Dean Albert H. Bowker of the Graduate Division. National Science Foundation grants will cover conversion and outfitting of the 135-foot auxiliary schooner as well as her operation on a year-round schedule of research and graduate training. An initial grant of $462,945 was authorized by the foundation a year ago when it was planned to use the sailing yacht Pioneer in the graduate training-research program. The owner of the Pioneer died before negotiations completed. Te Vega is owned by the Liberian Pacific Navigation Co. She carries 12,000 feet of sail and accommodates 30 people including the crew. Three 11-week cruises in Pacific waters are planned each year, roughly corresponding to academic quarters at the University. About three week will be allowed between voyages, with longer periods for overhaul. Home port will be Monterey, adjacent to the ocean-front town of Pacific Grove where Hopkins Marine Station is located. Prof. Rolf Bolin, assistant director of the marine station, will head the program as chief scientist. A veteran of previous scientific expeditions aboard various other research vessels, he hopes to get the first Stanford expedition underway by next January. Three senior scientists serving as faculty members plus 12 junior scientists (students) will man the ship in addition to a crew of 15. The scientists will be recruited from institutions throughout the country.

Under direction of the senior scientists students well assist in handling the various typos of gear, keeping a biological log, sorting and cataloging the collections, and making oceanographic observations. Lectures will supplement the daily laboratory work.

Among the studies planned are investigations of the luminescence of many deep-sea creatures and its role in their lives, of fish migrations, of oceanic food chains, and of the biological economy of the deep-sea environment. The resulting collections and data will be made available for study by scientists throughout the world.

TE VEGA, a new "classroom'' for Hopkins Marine Station, will be taken over by Stanford in July.

The Stanford Daily, Volume 141, Issue 49, 8 May 1962