Humanity to Reach Deepest Corners of Ocean in Submarine Expedition

The Five Deeps Expedition will kick off in December to better chart the bottoms of the world's oceans.

Humanity will finally touch the deepest corners of the world's oceans
Getty Images/EyeEm

A journey 6.5 miles beneath the surface of the ocean will launch in December to map out the bottoms of the world’s oceans.

The Five Deeps Expedition, launched by investor and explorer Victor Vescovo and scientist Alan Jamieson, will carry the duo in a $48 million submarine to the floor of each of the world’s five oceans.

“Our depth of ignorance about the oceans is quite dramatic,” Vescovo said to an audience gathered to learn about the trip, Business Insider reported.  “Four of the oceans have never even had a human being go to their bottom. In fact, we don’t even know with great certainty where the bottom of the four are.”

Their first stop is the deepest part of the Atlantic Ocean, known as the Puerto Rican trench. It is so far below the surface that any communication from below will take a full seven seconds to reach the top. For comparison, communication to Earth from the moon during the Apollo missions took about 2.5 seconds.

But the journey is just as treacherous as the one undertaken by those astronauts. When traveling that far below the surface of the ocean, the pressure could amount to over 800 times what it is at sea level and if anything goes wrong, there’s little chance a rescue mission would be successful.

“There’s very little chance of getting rescued when you’re down 11 kilometers (6.8 miles),” engineer John Ramsey explained to BI before quickly adding, “well, there’s no chance.”

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