“The Challenger Deep is something like 50x the size of the Grand Canyon”
“The sub actually shrinks 3 inches at the bottom of the ocean.”
“My feeling was one of complete isolation from all of humanity. I felt like I went to another planet and came back.”
- The pilot is descending about 36,000 feet (10,973 meters), but his ears won’t pop during the journey; the pressure inside the pilot’s sphere stays constant.
- Crammed with equipment and just 43 inches (109 centimeters) wide, the interior of the pilot sphere is so small that the pilot will have to keep his knees bent and can barely move.
- Water vapor from the pilot’s breath and sweat condenses on the cold metal sphere and drains to a space where it’s sucked into a plastic bag. In an emergency, the pilot can drink it.
- The pilot chamber is a sphere because it’s the strongest shape for resisting pressure—if the pilot sat in a cylinder, the walls would need to be three times thicker.
- If the sub’s 1,100 pounds (500 kilograms) of ballast weights don’t drop when commanded, a back-up galvanic release will corrode in the seawater within a fixed period of time, freeing the sub to rise to the surface.
National Geographic’s Daily News has the full story on James Cameron’s record-breaking trip.
Also, more facts on the Sub called the DeepSea Challenger, and a descriptive video below.