Ocean Research Ship Tour: the R/V Falkor

Sunday, September 23, 2018 • 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Tours start every 15 minutes.
Exploratorium, Pier 15, east end of the pier

Free, reserve tickets at reserve@exploratorium.edu or 415.528.4646. A limited number of tickets will be available at the east end of Pier 15 starting at 9:45 a.m. on the day of the event. First-come, first-served. Limited capacity.

Note: The ship is not accessible for strollers or wheelchairs. Children under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. No weapons or large bags are allowed aboard, and flat, closed-toed shoes are required. You must have a photo ID to board the ship.


Take a free tour of one of the most advanced research vessels in the world: the R/V Falkor. Owned and operated by the Schmidt Ocean Institute, Falkor is returning to San Francisco to prepare for an expedition to explore hydrothermal vents off the coast of California.

Climb aboard and see some of the ship’s technology and research labs. At sea, Falkor uses multi-beam sonar to map the sea floor, a remotely operated vehicle to explore the deep ocean and send back high-definition video, high performance computing and satellite connections that allow the ship to stream live video and data to the Internet, an “underwater elevator” that delivers tools and instruments to the sea floor, and even a blimp and drones that provide aerial observations. Fans of the film The Neverending Story can look for a quote about the ship’s namesake—Falkor, the luckdragon.

Originally a German fisheries vessel, the R/V Falkor was converted into an oceanographic research vessel in 2012. The ship’s mission is to advance ocean research, discovery, and knowledge, and to share information about the ocean with scientists and citizens worldwide.