Also known as Marianas Trench, the Mariana Trench is in the western Pacific Ocean. It is about 200 Kms east of the Mariana Islands. As most of you would know, it is the deepest location of the earth and the deepest part of the earth’s oceans.
Do you know the deepest part of the Mariana Trench? It is the Challenger Deep, named after the experimental vessel HMS Challenger II. This was a fishing boat transformed into a sea lab by Swiss scientist Jacques Piccard.
How deep is the Mariana Trench?
First off, let’s have a glance at the average depths of the earth’s oceans:
The Pacific Ocean is 4,188 meters (13,740 feet) deep
The Atlantic Ocean is 3,339 meters (10,955 feet) deep
The Indian Ocean is 3,960 meters (12,990 feet) deep
The Arctic Ocean is 1,038 meters (3,407 feet) deep
The deepest point in each of the earth’s oceans are as follows:
Pacific Ocean’s Mariana Trench at 11,033 meters (36,201 feet) deep
Atlantic Ocean’s Puerto Rico Trench at 8,648 meters (28,374 feet) deep
Indian Ocean’s Java Trench at 7,725 meters (25,344 feet) deep
Arctic Ocean’s Eurasian Basin at 5,450 meters (17,881 feet) deep
On the 13th of May 2019, an American explorer made the deepest-ever dive to the bottom of the Mariana Trench. While breaking the record, he found plastic waste on the seafloor.
Victor Vescovo went down approximately 11km to the deepest place in the ocean. That is – the Pacific Ocean’s Mariana Trench. The latter spent 4 hours exploring the bottom of the trench in his submersible. This device has what it takes to withstand the immense pressure of the deep. Along with sea creatures, Victor also found a plastic bag and sweet wrappers.
It is thought to be the 3rd time humans have reached the ocean’s risky depths. The first dive took place in 1960 by Swiss engineer Jacques Piccard and US Navy lieutenant Don Walsh. They descended to the bottom of the Trench in a vessel called the bathyscaphe Trieste.
The latest descent is now the deepest – making Victor Vescovo the new record holder. His team made 5 dives to the bottom of the trench during the journey. Robotic landers were also arranged to discover the remote terrain.
Mr Vescovo’s creation: “It is almost indescribable how excited all of us are about achieving what we just did.
“This submarine and its mother ship, along with its extraordinarily talented expedition team, took marine technology to a ridiculously higher new level by diving – rapidly and repeatedly – into the deepest, harshest, area of the ocean.”
The team believes that they have also discovered several new species. Some of these include a pink snailfish at 8,000m, a spoon worm 7,000m-down and prawn-like crustaceans called amphipods.
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The explorers now plan to test the creatures they collected. They want to see if these contain microplastics. As well as the Mariana Trench, dives have also taken place in the last six months. These were in the South Sandwich Trench and in the Puerto Rico Trench to name a few. The final challenge will be in August 2019. That is, to reach the bottom of the Molloy Deep in the Arctic Ocean. Can’t wait for it, right?