The R/V Zephyr - retired
2001 to 2012
MBARI received the pilot vessel San Francisco as a donation from the San Francisco Bar Pilots Association. The association's name is based on an enormous, horseshoe-shaped sand bar at the mouth of the Golden Gate bridge from which the pilots safely navigate nearly 8,500 vessels through each year. The Zephyr was converted from a pilot vessel into a research vessel during the summer of 2001. It carried a crane for deploying oceanographic instruments such as the autonomous underwater vehicle. The deck level cabin/galley was converted into a dry laboratory.