In 1985, the oceanographers Robert Ballard, Jean-Louis Michel and their crew located the wreck of the RMS Titanic at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean. Images of the shipwreck have been as iconic since then as photos of the ocean liner taken before the 1912 tragedy. But the time of the ruin in the ocean is limited. As part of an upcoming documentary, a group of scientists have been conducting the first manned expedition to the wreck for 14 years and discovered that the Titanic is rapidly forfeiting, reports the BBC.
After she had sunk, Titanic settled in two parts on the seabed about 370 miles off the coast of Newfoundland in Canada. Most of the wreckage is still intact, but since 2005, when it was last visited by a submarine occupied by humans, a lot has changed.
While working on a film for Atlantic Productions London, a Triton Submarines reconnaissance team visited the wreck five times in eight days and discovered that entire parts of the ship had disappeared. The starboard side of the officers' quarters has deteriorated, and the captain's bathtub has completely disappeared. The deckhouse on the same side and the sloping lounge roof of the bow are also close to collapse, according to the crew.
"The Titanic returns to nature"
Parts of the wreck are now rapidly decaying  [Tap to expand] https://t.co/O4TUkYIZP4 pic.twitter.com/jL2MC2cijD
– BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) August 21, 2019
Unlike other artifacts and historical sites, there is no way to preserve the rubble of Titanic for future generations. Swirling ocean currents, corrosive salt and metal-eating bacteria continue to decompose the steel colossus until it becomes part of the ocean. Some experts estimate that by 2030 probably no part of the wreck will be left.
Regardless of whether this projection is delayed by years or decades, these results indicate that every new team that visits the Titanic may find something different than the team in front of them. On this last expedition, Triton Submarines' exploration team was able to film the wreck for the first time in 4K. This footage could be one of the last ever recorded by many elements of the ship.  [h/t BBC]