150 years after Charles Darwin completed his epic voyage in "HMS Beagle", a research ship owned and operated by the UK's Natural Environment Research Council and bearing the name of the famous scientist, began another global circumnavigation that would take her away from her home base for three and a half years. Unlike "HMS Beagle", the Royal Research Ship (RRS) "Charles Darwin" would not be dedicated to the scientific endeavours of one man, but would support some 24 scientific teams studying topics as diverse as the causes of El Nino, deep sea currents in the Indian Ocean, and the speed with which the Indian sub-continent moved towards Asia. The author, who was personally involved in much of the planning and operation of this round-the-world voyage, has made every effort to explain the complexities of modern scientific research in terms the non-scientist can understand, and to draw out some of the excitement today's scientists experience when their research reveals some unexpected discovery.
1. The logistics; 2. Setting off; 3. The Indian Ocean; 4. Physical oceanography; 5. Eastern Indian Ocean; 6. The long transect; 7. Singapore refit; 8. Southwest Pacific; 9. Tonga; 10. Eastern Pacific; 11. The Antarctic; 12. Eastern Pacific again; 13. Back into the Atlantic 14. Homecoming. Appendices.