First oceanographic vessel
Last updated: January 27, 2020 at 4:10 am
HMS Challenger (1872) — In December 1872, Challenger sailed from Portsmouth (England) on a 3.5-year global oceanic expedition. The ship’s mission was exclusively scientific and was led by the academicians of the British Royal Society. Its objectives were to circumnavigate the globe, to take soundings at regular intervals, and to measure the physical and biological characteristics of the ocean, taking biological samples from the surface to the bottom using nets and dredges. Challenger was the first oceanographic vessel to sound the deepest point in Earth’s oceans, the namesake Challenger Deep, in the Mariana Trench. The ship traveled 68,890 nautical miles (127,666 km / 79.328 miles) through every ocean except the Arctic charting 363 million sq km (140 million sq miles) and collecting 4,417 new species of marine plants and animals. The findings of the Challenger science team would influence the world of biology and earth sciences for the next century. The oceanographic vessel was the namesake of the ill-fated space shuttle Challenger lost in 1986.
Eric Linklater. (1971). The voyage of the Challenger. London : J. Murray, 1972.
Please note that comments are moderated: (1) Stay on topic (2) Be respectful (3) Refrain from vulgarity and abusive language (4) Do not make personal complaints about a person’s character, business, work or associations (5) Do not publish materials that violate copyright. OFFENDING COMMENTS WILL BE DELETED.
If you have claim to a diving or underwater record or first, if you know of a significant first or record not listed here, or if you can demonstrate that any of the information on this website is false or outdated, please complete the form on the record submission page.
In order to ensure your browsing experience is as enjoyable as possible, banners are kept to an absolute minimum, which means that advertising revenues alone cannot sustain this 100% FREE publication. Researching and updating the Diving Almanac requires a lot of time and dedication. If you believe the diving community needs a central body of information to record, validate and make available our shared history and accomplishments, please show your support by making a contribution to the Diving Almanac via PayPal (Porbeagle Press). Thank you!
Jeffrey Gallant is the Editor-in-Chief and Records Keeper of the Diving Almanac. He is also a contributing editor of DIVER Magazine, and the scientific director of the Greenland Shark and Elasmobranch Education and Research Group (GEERG). Jeffrey started diving in 1982.