During a recent moonlight excursion around the harbor, the conversation quickly turned to tales of piracy and exploration.
A guide shared stories of the days when tall masts and billowing sails loomed over coastal horizons, and intriguing characters like Blackbeard and Redbeard plied the seas.
We couldn’t help but wonder about the secrets that went down with the shipwrecks and lost artifacts scattered across the ocean floor. But these sites are hidden deep in the waves where humans can’t normally reach.
However, an explorer is venturing to places that no human being has visited before.
secrets of the ocean
At first glance, OceanOneK looks a bit like a diver descending through the waters off the coast of France.
Researchers at Stanford University designed the robot to dive underwater and explore sunken planes, ships, submarines, and perhaps even lost cities. And this year, the humanoid robot reached a new milestone when it plunged half a mile (852 meters) below the surface of the ocean.
But another feature makes the robot even more special: a touch-based feedback system. This interactivity allows your operators feel everything they might experience if they were diving themselves: the resistance of the water and touching objects like vases and oil lamps from an ancient Roman ship.
A team of volunteers found more than 20 pieces of wood in a cave off the Oregon coast in June. The logs belonged to the 1693 shipwreck of the Santo Cristo de Burgos.
The Spanish galleon was not laden with treasure, but local lore and the ship’s mysterious fate have become history over time, possibly enough to inspire Steven Spielberg when he created his 1985 film about teenagers in Astoria in search of the a pirate’s treasure off the Oregon coast.
The discovery has reignited interest in searching for more parts of the wreck. After all, “The Goonies never say To die!”
Penguins may reign in Antarctica, but they also live in the wild in Patagonia in South America. In these remote places, scientists and conservationists dedicate their lives to protecting flightless seabirds.
Gentoo, Magellanic and King penguins act as beacons for how ecosystems are responding to the climate crisis.
“It is the perfect animal to get to know the ocean better,” said marine biologist Andrea Raya Rey.
Through the universe
Astronomers have found a “black widow” in space, and this dead star has grown to record size by feasting on another celestial object.
The neutron star, or the dense collapsed remains of a colossal star, weighs more than twice the mass of our sun, making it the heaviest ever observed. When these objects get too heavy, they usually collapse and form a black hole, so this could be the limit for neutron stars.
Meet a rare Gorgosaurus, a relative of T. rex, but with more speed and a stronger bite. The 77-million-year-old fossil sold for just over $6 million this week during a Sotheby’s auction.
This specimen is just one of a handful of dinosaur skeletons to have made it to the bidding block, a trend that worries scientists. When fossils are auctioned, they may end up in private collections, meaning paleontologists can’t study them.
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