GUANGZHOU, Dec. 8 (Xinhua) -- The Chinese scientific research ship Dayang Yihao, or Ocean One, set sail here Wednesday, starting a 376-day global trip that will take it across the Pacific, Atlantic and Indian oceans.
The vessel will conduct research on hot liquid sulfides and deep-sea biological diversity, said Tao Chunhui, the chief scientist of the ship's research team, during a media function held before the ship departed in Guangzhou, provincial capital of Guangdong in China's south.
Hot liquid sulfides, commonly known as "black chimneys" by researchers, can provide clues about the origins of life.
This will be China's 22nd deep-sea scientific research mission and the third global voyage of Dayang Yihao, an important oceanic science research vessel for China.
A total of 431 scientists will join the research in different phases of the voyage.
Dayang Yihao carries advanced scientific instruments including the "Sea Dragon 2," a remotely-operated underwater vehicle (ROV), as well as a powerful newly developed deep sea drilling machine.
The ship is expected to return home on Dec. 18, 2011 after covering 45,000 nautical miles. It will make stops in South Africa, Brazil, Panama and Ecuador.
"It will be a trip of science, peace and harmony," said Wang Fei, deputy head of the State Oceanic Administration (SOA) of China.