On 27 February 2022 in the Ross Sea, Le Commandant Charcot set a new world record in reaching the navigable latitude closest to the South Pole.

PONANT’s latest addition to the fleet, the high polar exploration hybrid-electric vessel powered by Liquefied Natural Gas, Le Commandant Charcot, is the first ship in the world to reach the extreme latitude of 78°44.3’ South in the Bay of Whales in the Ross Sea. Captain Patrick Marchesseau, who was at the helm, describes this emotional moment: “the Bay of Whales was the point of departure for the Amundsen expedition which was the first to reach the South Pole on 14 December 1911. The temperature was around -15°C. It was in this beautiful landscape, as striking as the cold which reigns here, that Le Commandant Charcot reached 78°44.3’ South, which is the closest geographical latitude to the South Pole by sea on the entire Antarctic continent”. 
Pioneering and responsible
Le Commandant Charcot is the world’s first hybrid electric LNG powered luxury polar exploration ship. It is a major innovation that signals PONANT’s deep commitment to sustainable tourism and to minimising the environmental impact.  A ship of scientific opportunity, she is also the only exploration ship in the world to host researchers on board and provide them with dedicated work areas. With Le Commandant Charcot, PONANT is helping the scientific world collect data and gain new insights into the world because “we protect better what we know”.