Hollywood filmmaker James Cameron has bequeathed his DEEPSEA CHALLENGER submarine, to the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) in Massachusetts, ultimately helping researchers there better understand life in Earth’s last unexplored frontier.
In March, 2012, Cameron bested Branson and the underdog Lahey in a race to be the first explorer of the ocean deadliest trench in half a century. Cameron plunged about seven miles to the bottom of the Mariana Trench in the western Pacific ocean, where temperatures are near freezing and the bone-crushing pressure is one thousand times greater than that at sea level.
In addition to donating the sub, Cameron will give nearly $1 million to help WHOI scientists and engineers make the sub's technology more widely available for deep-sea exploration.
“We’ve been sure to fund this enough that there are enough people and resources available to write this up, publish it, and therefore have it available,” Cameron said during a recent roundtable discussion in New York City with WHOI scientists. “To me, that’s an infinitely better outcome than [the sub] sitting dormant until I’m done with my next two movies, and maybe it comes to the tech community five or six years down the line when it’s already obsolete.”
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