Missing Titanic sub: US Navy microphones picked up vessel’s implosion days ago

Titanic-Tourist Sub
This photo provided by OceanGate Expeditions shows a submersible vessel named Titan used to visit the wreckage site of the Titanic. In a race against the clock on the high seas, an expanding international armada of ships and airplanes searched Tuesday, June 20, 2023, for the submersible that vanished in the North Atlantic while taking five people down to the wreck of the Titanic. (OceanGate Expeditions via AP)

Missing Titanic sub: US Navy microphones picked up vessel’s implosion days ago

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U.S. Navy microphones used to detect enemy submarines reportedly picked up what the Navy believes was the implosion of the missing Titan submarine on Sunday.

Defense officials involved in the search operations for the missing submarine told the Wall Street Journal that an acoustic detection system heard what officials believe was the implosion hours after the sub had disappeared. The detection came from the area of the Atlantic Ocean where debris from the submersible was found on Thursday.

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“The U.S. Navy conducted an analysis of acoustic data and detected an anomaly consistent with an implosion or explosion in the general vicinity of where the Titan submersible was operating when communications were lost,” a senior Navy official told the outlet in a statement. “While not definitive, this information was immediately shared with the Incident Commander to assist with the ongoing search and rescue mission.”

The actual name of the detection system was not released due to national security concerns.

The Titan tourist submarine was reported missing on Sunday while it was on a trip to see the remains of the historic RMS Titanic, located roughly 370 miles south of Newfoundland, Canada. At the time of its disappearance, officials predicted the crew had approximately four days worth of oxygen on board, which would have run out on Thursday.

Debris was later found on Thursday afternoon that Coast Guard officials have determined is consistent with the “catastrophic loss” of the submarine’s pressure chamber. It was found by a remote-operated vehicle on the ocean floor. The family members of the five-person crew were alerted immediately.

The Coast Guard said it believes that all five members are dead, but it said the search for their remains will continue.

“On behalf of the United States Coast Guard and the entire Unified Command, I offer my deepest condolences to the families,” Coast Guard Rear Adm. John Mauger said in a press briefing. “I can only imagine what this has been like for them, and I hope that this discovery provides some solace during this difficult time.”

Titan, the Cyclops-class manned submersible that went missing, was designed and built by OceanGate for “site survey and inspection, research and data collection, film and media production, and deep sea testing of hardware and software,” according to the company.

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While it has been touted by the company as a state-of-the-art machine, experts and observers expressed concerns about several technical features, including in a letter sent by the Marine Technology Society that expressed its “unanimous concern” regarding OceanGate’s decision to forgo DNV-GL class rules.

The five people on board the vessel included Hamish Harding, the chairman of Action Aviation; Shahzada Dawood, the vice chairman of Engro Corporation Limited; Dawood’s son Suleman; Paul-Henri Nargeolet, a diver and Titanic researcher and director of underwater research at RMS Titanic; and OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush.

© 2023 Washington Examiner

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