research vessel Nautilus
- On 05/08/2011
- In Underwater Archeology
From Our Amazing Planet
Scientists using a remotely operated vehicle in waters off Turkey stumbled upon an unknown shipwreck yesterday (Aug. 3).
Today the world could watch the live stream from a camera aboard the underwater robot as the team investigated the wreckage for the first time.
The team aboard the research vessel Nautilus, on an expedition in the Black Sea, happened upon the sunken ship while on the way to investigate another shipwreck, known as the Sinop B.
The team has dubbed the newfound shipwreck the Sinop E. The ship lies in about 305 feet (105 meters) of water, and based on the amphorae — ceramic storage vessels — strewn near its broken timbers on the ocean floor, the team suspects it dates to a time before the Sinop B, a wreck from sometime within the 5th to 7th centuries.
Two red dots sometimes appear on the camera view — these are lasers shot from the remotely operated vehicle to take measurements. The dots are approximately 4 inches (10 centimeters) apart, a measure that can give viewers a sense of scale of the artifacts caught on film.
The expedition is a project of oceanographer Robert Ballard, best known for his discovery of the wreck of the Titanic, and it aims to investigate everything from shipwrecks to underwater volcanoes and weird sea life around the planet for several months this summer.
Throughout the season, a satellite dish on the ship will transmit live video and other data from the expedition 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.