Advanced UK research ship may be named ‘Boaty McBoatface’

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London (AP) – It’s a name that might better suit a rubber ducky than an extremely expensive, state-of-the-art research vessel designed to explore the coldest regions on Earth.

Nonetheless, the name “Boaty McBoatface” could be given to a 200 million-pound ($288 million) vessel because of a public preference for that moniker.

The name has emerged as a favorite since Britain’s Natural Environment Research Council sought input in naming the new vessel, urging the public to find an “inspirational name” that reflects the ship’s mission and celebrates Britain’s long naval history.

RSS Boaty McBoatface? The as-yet-unnamed vessel. (Photo/NERC)

Spokeswoman Alison Robinson said the council is “pleased that people are embracing the idea in a spirit of fun.”

She said thousands of names have been proposed and that many honored British explorers and British history.  Robinson said the council will announce the name it has chosen “in due course” based on the criteria it set.