The Research Vessel Cape Hatteras is docking Wednesday morning for the final time in its 31 year career at the Duke Marine Lab in Beaufort.
A short ceremony is planned to honor the crew, including Captain Dale Murphy, who has been with the vessel since its first mission three decades ago.
Officials say the boat is expected to dock at 9:15 a.m. Wednesday.
The boat ramp director at Duke University says the ship is getting older, and more modern ships are taking over.
The vessel is up for sale, with an asking price of $1,250,000.
For the past 31 years the Cape Hatteras research vessel has been a staple to the Duke Marine Lab in Beaufort. Monday the ship left for one of her last missions for the university.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife scientists loaded up the R/V Cape Hatteras with supplies for the next 10 days. While local scientist have relied on this ship for decades, some some of the crew members have been working on the Cape Hatteras since she first went off to sea and say they will really miss her.
Captain Dale Murphy has worked on the research vessel since her first mission.
"I like coming down here with the people. They're good people. Straight through. They're as good a crew as I've ever worked with," said Captain Murphy.
The boat ramp director at Duke University says the ship is getting older and more modern ships are taking over. While the ship's duty for Duke is nearly done, the vessel has been certified as a research vessel for 10 more years and it's up sale for $ 1.8 million.