National Oceanography Centre


The National Oceanography Centre is an independent charity, funded by UK Research and Innovation to work on National Capability programmes, and manages on its behalf, the National Marine Equipment Pool – Europe’s largest fleet of autonomous and robotic vehicles, and two state of the art research ships RRS Discovery and RRS James Cook.

The NOC has two sites, Southampton and Liverpool, and employs around 650 staff. It is co-located at both sites with leading UK Universities, giving us a unique position in UK marine research. A truly multi-disciplinary centre, the NOC’s research encompasses Marine Geoscience, Marine Physics and Ocean Climate, Marine Systems Modelling, Ocean Biogeochemistry and Ecosystems, and Ocean Technology and Engineering. It is home to the nation’s marine data assets; the British Oceanographic Data Centre (BODC), the British Ocean Sediment Core Research Facility (BOSCORF) and the Discovery Collections.

Through its trading subsidiary, NOC Innovations Ltd, the NOC provides a vital link between science and business, enabling technology and research to transfer to industry and for revenue to be generated to support our charitable purposes.

The NOC works collaboratively with over 40 other UK marine institutions through the NOC Association for Marine Science National Capability Beneficiaries, and engage with users of the UK marine infrastructure through the Marine Facilities Advisory Board, and with the beneficiaries of our long term underpinning National capability Science programmes, through the CLASS Advisory Board. The NOC facilitates international co-operation in science by representing the UK internationally, leading the UK delegation of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO, through our membership of the European Marine Board, and through partnerships with other research institutions and organisations worldwide.