The Astrolabe was a converted fluyt of the French Navy. She departed Brest on 1 August 1785 under Paul Antoine Fleuriot de Langle, along with the Boussole under La Perouse. The expedition vanished mysteriously in 1788 after leaving Botany Bay on 10 March 1788.
The fate of the expedition was eventually solved by Captain Peter Dillion in 1827 when he found remnants of the ships the Astolable and the Boussole at Vanikoro Island in the New Hebrides. The ships had been wrecked in a storm. Survivors from one ship had been massacred while survivors from the other ship had constructed their own small boat and sailed off the island, never to be heard from again.
Mantua has built its reputation on large, elaborately detailed ship model plans. The detail in their range of large ship model plans is exceptional.