The Russian scientific expedition vessel Akademik Fyodorov has left Antarctic.
The Akademik Fyodorov has already crossed the 60th degree of south latitude, which according to the "Agreement on Antarctic" is the border of the Antarctic waters, Deputy Head of the Russian Antarctic Expedition Vladimir Kuchin told RIA Novosti.
The Akademik Fyodorov heads now towards Cape Town and is planned to be there on Aril 25th. The Akademik Fyodorov will replenish there its reserves of fuel and food and will also set ashore several polar explorers, who will then leave for St Petersburg. The other participants in the 47th Russian Antarctic expedition will remain on board the vessel, which will arrive in St Petersburg in May 2003. On their way, they will conduct ocean and ornithology researches.
The Akademik Fyodorov will be docked in St Petersburg for inspection and technical maintenance. In the summer of 2003 the vessel will sail to Antarctic to conduct a series of scientific researches if the maintenance terms permit, Kuchin said.
At the end of summer the vessel will undergo new preparations for another voyage to Antarctic. In accordance with the project "Investigation and Exploration of Antarctic" within the framework of the Russian Federal program "World Ocean", the Akademik Fyodorov will head to the Antarctic shores in the end of October or the beginning of November 2003.