Amels and Damen confirm Gene Chaser sale


Amels and Damen Yachting have confirmed the sale of the 55m yacht support, Gene Chaser. The name of the yacht was unveiled during a ceremony held at the Dutch builder’s yard in Vlissingen. Complete with a research laboratory, the support vessel will be used alongside the Amels 180 Gene Machine.

From Damen Yachting’s YS 5009 Yacht Support range, Gene Chaser was originally launched in late 2020 as Blue Ocean. Over the past two months, she has undergone a period of transformation to set up the interior as a working research laboratory. The main salon has been converted into a working wet and dry laboratory and other interior areas have been designed for conferences and educational purposes.

Guest suites allow for eight researchers and experts, as well as a crew of seven and four full-time scientists. The 225m² exterior deck has space for a 13 tonne capacity crane, Gene Machine’s Fjord 42 and a Hatløy Maritime Oxpro AL8 landing craft.

Matthew Gow, captain, Gene Machine, said: “We’ve achieved an incredible amount of work in a short period of time and the collaboration with the team at Damen Yachting has been excellent. Watching the transformation take place has been very special and I cannot wait to see Gene Chaser alongside Gene Machine.”

Owner Dr Jonathan Rothberg said: “Coronavirus reminded us of the fragility of our world. Whether it’s a global pandemic or global climate change, each of us must rise to the challenges we face, as we are best prepared. For my family, this means Gene Chaser and her onboard Gene Lab – a next generation lab to address mankind’s greatest challenges. Gene Chaser will be the tip of the spear as we deploy never before available technology to characterise, understand, and expand our knowledge of biodiversity, and identify nature’s solutions – within her genes – to the world’s greatest existential threats.”

Gene Chaser is the eighth yacht to be launched from Damen’s YS 5009 design. The difference being, Gene Chaser’s main deck hangar, which can be used for submersibles and dive operations, or as a vehicle garage and workshop.