Detlev Loell and Partners is a German firm with substantial experience of designing, engineering and rigging new and replica tall ships, naval training ships and super-yachts.
Founder Detlev Loell has been involved with the HMS Beagle Project from its inception, contributing research and design time to create initial deck, sail and rigging plans. One of his specialties is taking inspiration from historic ships. The modern Cisne Branco, built by Dutch partners for the Brazilian Navy is based on the 1851 Flying Cloud.
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The HMS Beagle was a Cherokee-class brig-sloop launched in 1820. She measured 27.5 m in length by 7.5 m in breadth, with a weight of 235 tons. She was converted for exploration, and undertook three surveying voyages focused on South America and Australia. The most famous of these is the second voyage (1831–1836) to South America and around the world with Robert FitzRoy as captain and the young naturalist Charles Darwin onboard. Darwin went on to formulate the theory of evolution based on his observations on the voyage. He considered the voyage to be the most important event in his life and to have defined his career, and it has become one of the most significant voyages of exploration in maritime history. After the surveying voyages, HMS Beagle became a coastguard watch vessel on the Essex coast, before being sold for breaking up in 1870.