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Perhaps it's not surprising that the Titanic isn't in great shape. More than 110 years after the ocean liner collided with an iceberg and sank into the North Atlantic (and 37 years after it was rediscovered), the ship lies at the bottom of the ocean, around 12,500 feet (3,800 m) below sea level, some 370 miles (595 km) away from St. Johns, Newfoundland.
Thanks to research teams and cutting-edge submersibles like OceanGate Expeditions' Titan, we can now see exactly what state the famous ship is in. According to OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush, the shipwreck is in worse condition than it was last year, particularly the forward railing. He noted last year that the ship's mast had already collapsed.
The shipwreck – evidence of a disaster that claimed over 1,500 lives when the luxury liner sank in April 1912 – is being consumed by the ocean and will one day disappear entirely, possibly within several decades. However, the area is far from lifeless. Marine biologists, archaeologists, mapping specialists, and environmental DNA experts will analyze the footage and data collected by OceanGate to learn about the species that have turned the site into a deep-sea habitat.
Touring the Titanic:
- The Titan submersible, which was designed to withstand the immense pressures at the bottom of the ocean, will survey the Titanic's remains on a yearly basis. It has a laser scanner attached to take precise measurements.
- In addition to Rush, who piloted the submersible, and OceanGate's research team members, 21 "mission specialists" who each paid $250,000 were able to travel to the shipwreck site across the eight dives this season.
- Want to see it for yourself? Earlier this week, OceanGate released the first-ever high-definition footage of the Titanic site in 8K. It's available to watch on YouTube.