Monday, May 13, 2019

Texas explorer completes deepest ocean dive in history

By Danielle Haynes

The expedition team believes it identified three new marine
 animal species during the expedition. Photo courtesy 
of Five Deeps Expedition

May 13 (UPI) -- A Dallas-based explorer has set a record for the deepest dive ever made in a submersible -- in the world's deepest ocean trench, his organization announced Monday.

Victor Vescovo reached a depth of 35,853 feet on April 28 during a dive to the bottom of Challenger Deep in the Mariana Trench, the deepest known point on earth. The dive was 52 feet deeper than any previous manned dive, Vescovo's Five Deeps Expedition said

The last visit to Challenger Deep also set a depth record at 35,787 feet. That journey was made by filmmaker James Cameron in 2012

During the April 28-May 5 expedition to the Mariana Trench, the team also completed a dive to the bottom of Sirena Deep, about 128 miles away from Challenger Deep. The team spent hours at the bottom of the ocean at these locations, collecting samples, including the deepest piece of mantle rock ever collected.

RELATED Climate change triggered South American population decline 8,000 years ago, study says

Five Deeps Expedition believes it has identified at least three new species of marine animal, including a long-appendages amphipod.

"It's almost indescribable how excited all of us are about achieving what we just did," Vescovo said. "This submarine and its mother ship, along with its extraordinarily talented expedition team, took marine technology to an unprecedented new level by diving -- rapidly and repeatedly -- into the deepest, harshest area of the ocean.

"We feel like we have just created, validated, and opened a powerful door to discover and visit any place, any time, in the ocean -- which is 90 percent unexplored."

The Pacific Ocean dive is the fourth in Five Deeps Expedition's plan to dive to the bottom of each of the world's five oceans. The group is using a submersible called Limiting Factor to complete its challenge.

The team next plans to conduct dives in the Tonga Trench in the South Pacific Ocean.

No comments: