The expedition was based aboard DSSV Pressure Drop, which is equipped with an unlimited depth (11,000m) submersible. In addition to the submersible, the ship has 4 tender boats and three deep water ‘landers’, or devices that are used for communication, tracking and transporting material to/from the surface.
The dives started on 29th July 2019 when DSSV Pressure Drop arrived above the site of the wreck. Over the next week on site, five dives were made to the wreck to document its current condition and appearance.
The Titanic was last dived and physically seen by a human in 2005 during an expedition also led by EYOS Founder Rob McCallum. In 2005, 20 dives took place using twin Mir Russian submersibles, which were rated to 6,000m and carried a pilot and two guests.
In 2010, the Titanic was scanned with high-resolution sonar using a Remote Operated Vehicle. In addition to assessing its condition, researchers were able to place scientific experiments near the wreck and to conduct scientific research.
Many of the experiments focused on metallurgical samples, which are sacrificial pieces of metal that researchers use to track the breakdown of metal at these depths. The information is useful in predicting how shipwrecks break downover time. Moreover, scientists monitored the biology around the wreck which serves as a large artificial reef.
According to the company, the wreck has become vulnerable from sweeping eddies and subjected to ever-changing sea currents. The wreck is being slowly consumed by the strong, deep currents that flow through the Atlantic here, along with natural salt corrosion and metal eating bacteria.
Expedition Leader (and EYOS Expeditions founder) Rob McCallum, stated:
I think the Titanic is one of the most iconic and exclusive destinations on Earth. She is very difficult to reach because the logistics of working at 12,500ft while 370 miles offshore are challenging. A lot of people would like to do it, but diving on the Titanic is a complex and difficult undertaking, with currents up to 4 knots. Even though our onboard team has over 200 Titanic dives to their credit, we cannot take anything for granted. We plan every dive from scratch, and it is an immense honor and responsibility to have returned to the Titanic after so many years