Almost 37 years to the day from when a team from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution first located and photographed the wreck of the Titanic, a new expedition has returned with the most detailed images captured of the vessel. Seattle-based OceanGate Expeditions released the amazing 8K video footage showing never before seen details of the ship that famously sunk on its maiden voyage in April 1912.
Exploring the wreck that is sitting on the floor of the ocean 380 nautical miles from St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada, the 2022 Titanic Expedition promises new revelations, as well as documentation as the wreck, continues to disintegrate. The exploration team used new technologies which it said are critical in helping scientists and maritime archaeologists characterize the decay of the Titanic more precisely.
“Capturing this 8K footage will allow us to zoom in and still have 4K quality which is key for large screen and immersive video projects. Even more remarkable are the phenomenal colors in this footage,” said Stockton Rush, OceanGate Expeditions President.
He added that by comparing footage and images captured in the 2021 expedition, researchers can notice slight changes in certain areas of the wreck which the team will be reviewing by analyzing the 8K, 4K, and other footage captured during the 2022 expedition.
In the new high-quality video, OceanGate has been able to capture new details of the ship including the name of the anchor maker, Noah Hingley & Sons Ltd., on the portside anchor. Other details that they documented include the crane used for deploying the enormous 15-ton anchor, still located on the deck, and the shackle that was originally attached to the forward mast that collapsed after the 1985 expedition first photographed the ship. Other new revelations include three round structures along the inside of the railing, which are the triple fairleads that were used to feed the docking ropes to the bollards on shore to secure the ship.
The footage also provides scenes of the Titanic’s renowned bow, the portside anchor, hull, an enormous anchor chain (each link weighs approximately 200 pounds or nearly 91 kilograms), the number one cargo hold, and bronze capstans. Notably, the footage also captures dramatic evidence of decay for example where some of the ship’s rail has collapsed and fallen away or at the now famous scenes of the captain’s tub.
“I’ve been studying the wreck for decades and have completed multiple dives, and I can’t recall seeing any other image showing this level of detail. It is exciting that, after so many years, we may have discovered a new detail that wasn’t as obvious with previous generations of camera technologies,” said Rory Golden, OceanGate Expeditions Titanic expert, and veteran Titanic diver.
OceanGate said that one of the most amazing clips shows one of the single-ended boilers that fell to the ocean’s floor when the Titanic broke apart. Notably, it was one of the single-ended boilers that was the first element spotted by the Woods Hole team in 1985 and used to identify the Titanic.
The footage is expected to assist in determining the rate of decay of the ship as future expeditions capture new footage that can be compared year after year. The video will also support the identification of species that are observed on and around the Titanic and archaeologists will be able to document elements of the wreck and debris field in greater detail. A team of marine biologists, environmental DNA experts, maritime archaeologists, and geographic information system mapping specialists were part of the team for the 2022 expedition.