The highest point on our planet is the summit of Mount Everest (8, 848 meters), and the deepest is the Mariana Trench. According to the latest data, its depth is 10, 994 m below sea level. The Mariana Trench is located in the western part of the Pacific Ocean, its deepest point is called the "Challenger Abyss".
The first attempts to measure the depth of the Mariana Trench were made back in 1875. A British scientific expedition went there in the Challenger corvette. Moreover, the data of scientists of that time seriously differed from modern ones: according to the data of the "Challenger" expedition, the maximum depth of the depression was only 8, 184 m.
For a long time, scientists were convinced that no life could exist at such a huge depth. This misconception was dispelled in 1957. The Soviet research vessel "Vityaz" set off for the Mariana Trench, our scientists were able to prove that even at a depth of more than 7, 000 meters, living organisms are found.
In the fifties of the last century, the Swiss physicist Auguste Piccard developed a bathyscaphe capable of conducting studies of the World Ocean at great depths. In 1953, the bathyscaphe "Trieste" was launched, and in 1960 made a record dive to the bottom of the Mariana Trench. The crew of "Trieste" consisted of two people, the daredevils were the son of the designer Jacques Piccard and the scientist from the USA Don Walsh.
The dive took 4 hours 43 minutes. The researchers spent 20 minutes at the bottom, during which time they measured the level of radiation and the temperature of the water. The pressure at the deepest point of the World Ocean was 1072 times higher than the norm; during the immersion, the diameter of the bathyscaphe decreased by 3 mm.
After the ascent, the bathyscaphe was carefully examined by scientists. Many parts were severely deformed, despite the fact that they were made of high-strength material. And the biggest surprise was caused by the fact that a metal cable with a diameter of 20 cm was almost half sawn. Who was able to do this? This question remains open to this day.
The next person to risk repeating a similar feat was Hollywood director James Cameron. He dived in the Deepsea Challenger on March 26, 2012. The director assured that at the bottom he felt loneliness and complete isolation from all of humanity. So at the bottom
Only three people have visited the Mariana Trench. Much less than in space! There are a lot of legends and hypotheses about who lives at great depths of the ocean. So, scientists of the German expedition "Highfish" assured that at a depth of 7, 000 meters a huge lizard attacked their bathyscaphe, which began to gnaw it like a nut. It was decided to urgently lift the equipment. It is still unclear whether this fact really took place, or are such statements just a joke? However, the oceanographers themselves claim that the fauna of the World Ocean has been studied only by 5%.
The Mariana Trench is a marine reserve. Fishing and mining is strictly prohibited within its boundaries. But it is not forbidden for anyone to dive to its bottom. True, there are not many who wish.