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Emden Deep visited by humans for the first time

The Emden Deep, located in the Philippine Trench, has been visited by a manned exploration vehicle for the first time. It is the third deepest place on Earth and is second only to Challenger Deep and Horizon Deep. The first conquerors were Victor Vescovo and Dr Deo Florence Onda. 29 March Victor Vescovo and Filipino
Published: April 2, 2021 - 09:00
Updated: July 22, 2023 - 22:16
Emden Deep visited by humans for the first time

The Emden Deep, located in the Philippine Trench, has been visited by a manned exploration vehicle for the first time. It is the third deepest place on Earth and is second only to Challenger Deep and Horizon Deep. The first conquerors were Victor Vescovo and Dr Deo Florence Onda.

29 March Victor Vescovo and Filipino scientist Dr Deo Florence Onda dived to a depth of 1,045 metres. As with Vescovo’s previous explorations, the Limiting Factor underwater vehicle was used as a reliable and safe means of transport. As a result, both researchers carried out explorations, took samples and first saw with their own eyes what the Emden Deep looks like.

Nowadays it is rare to be able to truly discover something. To go where no man has ever been before. The potential discoveries at these sites will be very interesting and every dive seems to bring something new and exciting. – commented expedition leader Kelvin Murray

The descent to the bottom of the Philippine Trench took 4 hours. The divers spent another 3 hours exploring and surveying the area. As a result, this allowed them to explore more than 2km² of the seabed. Visibility was rated as excellent. Unfortunately, in terms of the amount of marine life present, it was very modest. After the exploration, it took the crew almost 3.5 hours to reach the surface.

Dr Deo Onda, Associate Professor at the Institute of Marine Sciences, University of the Philippines, specialises in microbial oceanography.

It was a once-in-a-lifetime chance to see the Emden Deep for the first time. And to do so with the flag of the Philippines on board. – Onda said in an interview with the press.

The Emden Deep takes its name from the German research vessel “Emden”, whose crew discovered it in 1927.

Finally, it is worth mentioning that the further immersion to the bottom of the Philippine Trench was to be carried out on 30 March. This time, Victor Vescovo’s partner was to be Professor Alan Jamieson of the University of Western Australia, an authority and specialist in the Hadal zone (below a depth of 6 km). Unfortunately, the dive did not take place.

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About author

Tomasz Andrukajtis
Editor-in-chief of the DIVERS24 portal and magazine. Responsible for obtaining, translating and developing content. He also supervises all publications. Achived his first diving certification – P1 CMAS, in 2000. Has a degree in journalism and social communication. In the diving industry since 2008.
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