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Articles on Shipwrecks

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It should be obvious to this diver that this is a shipwreck and not a reef, but what about to someone looking at a image of this spot taken from an aircraft? LookBermuda/Flickr

AI spots shipwrecks from the ocean surface – and even from the air

It’s difficult to tell a shipwreck from a natural feature on the ocean floor in a scan taken from a plane or ship. This project used deep learning to get it right 92% of the time.
Tube worms, anemones and mussels clustered near a hydrothermal vent on the Galapagos Rift. NOAA Okeanos Explorer Program, Galapagos Rift Expedition 2011/Flickr

Explorer Robert Ballard’s memoir finds shipwrecks and strange life forms in the ocean’s darkest reaches

Oceanographer Robert D. Ballard, who is best known for finding the wreck of Titanic, has written a memoir recounting his biggest discoveries and calling for more ocean exploration.
Nature’s bank vault. Julius Glampedakis

Seagrass, protector of shipwrecks and buried treasure

The sediments that accumulate beneath seagrass meadows can act as secure vaults for shipwrecks and other precious artefacts, by stopping water and oxygen from damaging the delicate timbers.
Louis XVI giving final instructions to the Comte de La Perouse in 1785, before La Perouse embarked on his fateful expedition to the Southern Hemisphere. State Library of NSW

The mystery of the La Pérouse expedition survivors: wrecked in Torres Strait?

The French La Pérouse expedition left Botany Bay in 1788, and then vanished, rumoured to be wrecked in the Solomon Islands. But an Indian newspaper article might reveal the fate of its survivors.
Chinese ceramics recovered from the 9th century Belitung shipwreck in Indonesia, now held at the Asian Civilisations Museum (Singapore) ArtScience Museum Singapore

When it comes to disappearing ocean history, HMAS Perth is the tip of the iceberg

Archaeologists this week found that more than half of of HMAS Perth, a WWII wreck in Indonesia, has disappeared. It’s now a race to protect the millions of other wrecks and sunken cities lying under the oceans.
Researchers compared the shipwreck history to tree ring data from slash pines to piece together the hurricane history over past centuries. Grant Harley

Shipwreck records and tree rings unveil Caribbean hurricane history – and clues to the future

In an attempt to better understand hurricanes, researchers recreate hundreds of years of hurricane records with Spanish shipwreck logs and tree ring data.
‘You take the front, I’ll take the back.’ EPA/Massimo Percossi

Righting the Costa Concordia: how to flip a half-sunk ship

The huge Costa Concordia cruiseship is due to be righted in preparation for finally being towed away from the Italian island of Giglio. But why has lifting and removing the wreck taken so long, given that…
Are Jack Sparrow’s diaries in there somewhere? Jurriaan Persyn

Bone-eating worm bonus for shipwreck hunters

New research has shown that the Southern Ocean near Antarctica is filled with whale bone-eating worms, but it lacks wood-eating marine fauna, which are found everywhere else in the world’s oceans. This…
Vietnam’s shoreline hosts thousands of shipwrecks, but most their treasures are being lost to the Vietnamese. Gavin White

First wrecked, now pillaged: Vietnam’s underwater treasure

Vietnam has thousands of kilometres of coastline, and may have thousands of shipwrecks. Many of these wrecks would be loaded with archaeologically fascinating and significant items. But the country has…

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