File. The SA Agulhas II embarks on an expedition to Antarctica. Picture: Armand Hough/African News Agency (ANA)

JOHANNESBURG - The SA Agulhas II returns from its scientific research trip in Antarctica on Friday, the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) said. 

The DEA said the vessel would be "welcomed  back" at the East Pier Quay, V & A Waterfront Cape Town.

"The vessel has for the first time been at sea for 100 days fulfilling its core mandate of scientific research. On this voyage, the SA Agulhas II was also chartered out to the United Kingdom’s Maritime Archaeological Consultants to undertake the historical Weddell Sea Expedition," the DEA said in a statement ahead of the return of the SA Agulhas II.

Aboard the vessel will be the SANAE 57 team members who completed 15 months in Antarctica.

The DEA, University of Cape Town, CSIR, Stellenbosch University together with their collaborators from various international research institutes, were also able to collect data, deploy and recover gliders during this voyage.

African News Agency (ANA)