“I’ll never let go, Jack”

Last night/ early this morning marked the 100 year “anniversary” of the Titanic sinking.  (I use quotations because I think it’s horrible to refer to such a tragic event using the same word used to describe things we usually like to celebrate: wedding anniversaries, dating anniversaries, sorority anniversaries etc.)

Very conveniently, I went on a field trip last week to Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Falmouth, MA to tour the facility and meet people working in the field of marine biology.   This included a viewing of part of the Alvin– the submarine that is most famous in biology for housing and providing the ability to dive down deep enough to discover the deep-sea hydro-thermal vents.  More interestingly (if you’re a girl, Leo DiCaprio fanatic or movie buff) the Alvin provided the diver who discovered a sunken half of the “unsinkable” ship, the ability to explore inside.  In addition to the excitement among historians, engineers and biologists, Hollywood found the underwater Titanic adventure to be very useful.  The images of the decaying ship is crucial in provoking emotion from the audience of the flick.

I also got a tour of the Knorr– one of the ships that launched the Alvin over the Titanic (where they bring old lady Rose to see her nude drawing).

Here are some photos I took!

This is the capsule that goes inside the Alvin, housing the underwater explorers. It was taken out of the sub in order to make way for a new and improved capsule that can withstand pressures at greater depths.

A life sized mock up of the inside of the capsule. Imagine fitting 4 full grown men in that thing! So cozy.

A classmate playing with the millions of buttons and switches inside the tiny vessel.

The Knorr. It was far too large, and anchored too close to get a full view of it.

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