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Jiaolong carries 1st scientist on deep-sea dive

Xinhua | Updated: 2013-06-18 15:16

ABOARD XIANGYANGHONG 09 - The Jiaolong manned deep-sea submersible on Tuesday carried its first scientist as crew member during a deep-sea dive.

The submersible, carrying Zhou Huaiyang, professor of the School of Marine and Earth Science at Tongji University, commenced its dive at 9:30 am and will return to the Xiangyanghong 09 oceanographic vessel around 4:00 pm.

<EM>Jiaolong</EM> carries 1st scientist on deep-sea dive

The deep-sea picture which Jiaolong captures on June 17, 2013. [Photo/Xinhua]

The Jiaolong completed a deep-sea dive in the South China Sea on Monday as part of an ongoing mission in the Pacific Ocean.

The crew included Ye Cong, chief designer of the Jiaolong and an employee of the China Shipbuilding Industry Corp., Yang Bo, a researcher from the Institute of Acoustics under the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) and Liu Kaizhou from the Shenyang Institute of Automation under the CAS.

Liu Feng, chief commander of the mission, said the success of the dive confirmed the submersible's ability to perform reliably.

"The discovery of multiple sea bed dwellers, such as mussels and spider crabs, will help to support further research in the South China Sea," Liu said.

The submersible left east China's city of Jiangyin on Monday to begin a 113-day-long mission that will include experiments designed to test its positioning system, as well as biological surveys and geological sampling to be conducted in the Pacific Ocean.

The Jiaolong set a new dive record after reaching a depth of 7,062 meters in the Pacific Ocean's Mariana Trench in June 2012. The current mission marks the start of a five-year trial period for the Jiaolong before it goes into regular operation.

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