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Saltwater and Metal-Eating Bacteria: How the Titanic is Slowly Being 'Consumed' By the Ocean

What the iceberg started, the saltwater is now finishing.

Raka Mukherjee | News18.com@RakaMukherjeee

Updated:August 26, 2019, 10:42 AM IST
Saltwater and Metal-Eating Bacteria: How the Titanic is Slowly Being 'Consumed' By the Ocean
Image credits: Atlantic Productions via Associated Press.

The Titanic sank to the bottom of the ocean after being hit by an iceberg. Now the saltwater in the ocean is finishing the job.

The first ever dive in 14 years after the Titanic sank, was visited by divers. In a press release by Triton, they detail how the RMS Titanic wreck was visited for the first time by a human occupied vehicle: The Triton 36,000/2

This dive found that slowly, but surely, the Titanic is being 'consumed' by the ocean.

Five separate dives were completed by an exploration team from Triton Submarines to where the ship, once deemed 'unsinkable' now rests, 370 miles south of Newfoundland, Canada, 4,000 metres below the surface.

Scientists and a team of representatives from the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration captured footage of the 107-year-old wreck with specially adapted cameras. The 4K footage made it possible to see the wreck in augmented and virtual reality technology.

"The most fascinating aspect was seeing how the Titanic is being consumed by the ocean and returning to its elemental form while providing refuge for a remarkably diverse number of animals," said Patrick Lahey, the president and co-founder of Triton Submarines.

This footage shows the effects of salt corrosion, metal-eating bacteria and deep current action on the decomposition of the ship.

The Titanic is submerged iny cold 1°C water, the wreck has become "vulnerable from sweeping eddies and subjected to ever-changing sea currents. Salt corrosion, metal-eating bacteria and deep current action are having the greatest impact on the wreck," reads the press release.

The Titanic sank in 1912, and lead to the death of 1,517 people on board. The dive team laid a wreath and held a ceremony to honor those who died in the ship's sinking.

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