A new record for Chinese manned submarine has been set to over 5000 meters deep on the July 26, 2011. This successful test was conducted in the northeast Pacific Ocean. It allows China to catch up in the competition of seabed exploration.
5057 meters under the sea, the second test for Jiaolong (蛟龙) was so good. It was broadcast live on Chinese state television, a bit like the space epic.
At 24:09 local time, the threshold of 5000 meters is reached: Explosion of joy in the command center and the mother ship on the surface: it is the Xiangyanghong 9 that carrying 96 experts who participated in the adventure. The Special crew from CCTV explains that it is minus ten degrees in the cabin of the submarine. Fortunately, all three on board Aquanauts “wear two pairs of socks and brought blankets with them,” said the reporter.
In 2003, China became the third nation capable of sending a man into orbit. Now, it has joined the club of great depth, with the other four countries including the United States, Russia, Japan and France.
Origin from the “863 plan”, the submersible device should be able to reach the 7000 meters by 2012, said its designers.
The Jiaolong made 17 dives between May 31 and July 13, 2010. It was particularly noted by planting a Chinese flag at the bottom of the South China Sea, a gesture seen as a provocation by some neighboring states, concerned about Beijing’s deep ambitions on the raw materials. “I believe that it will not take long before China can make its initial mining on the seabed,” said Jian Zhimin, director of the State Laboratory of Marine Geology in Tongji University.