The Atlantic Ocean is known for human civilization since time immemorial. It was here, according to ancient legends, was the mysterious island of Atlantis, which went under the water seventeen thousand years ago. He lived on him warlike and courageous people (Atlanteans), and God Poseidon reigned over him with his wife Clayto. The name of their eldest son was Atlan. In his honor, the vast sea washes the land and was called the Atlantic.
The mysterious civilization has sunk into oblivion, the sea has been renamed the ocean, and the name has remained. Don’t go anywhere and secrets of the atlantic ocean. Over the centuries, they have not diminished. But before you get acquainted with all the unusual and mysterious, you need to get a general idea of the majestic waters washing both the shores of hot Africa, and the land of Europe’s old women, and the distant, clouded coastline of the Americas.
Nowadays, the Atlantic Ocean is called a huge body of water on planet Earth, which accounts for 25% of the world’s oceans. Its area is almost 92 million km², together with the adjacent seas and the Atlantic part of the Southern Ocean. From north to south, the waters of the Atlantic stretch for 15.5 thousand km, and from west to east, in the narrowest part (from Brazil to Liberia), have a width of 2.8 thousand km.
If we take the distance of the Atlantic waters from the western coast of the Gulf of Mexico to the eastern coast of the Black Sea, then there will be a completely different figure – 13.5 thousand km. Ocean depth great difference too. Its average value is 3600 m, and maximum recorded in the gutter of Puerto Rico and corresponds to 8742 meters.
The bottom of the Atlantic is divided along into two parts Mid-Atlantic Ridge. He exactly repeats the shape of a huge reservoir and stretches a wide winding mountainous chain: from the north – from the Reykjanes ridge (Iceland) to the African-Antarctic ridge in the south (Bouve Island), going beyond the limits of the Arctic ice.
To the right and left of the ridge there are scattered depressions, trenches, faults, small ridges that make the relief of the ocean floor very complicated and confusing. The coastline (especially in northern latitudes) also has a non-simple structure. It is strongly indented by small bays, it has extensive water areas that penetrate deep into the land and form the sea. An integral part are the numerous straits in the coastal zone of the continents, as well as straits and canals connecting the Atlantic with the Pacific Ocean.
The Atlantic Ocean washes the shores of 96 state formations. His property includes 14 seas and 4 large bays. The rich climate in these geographic and geological parts of the earth’s surface provides numerous surface currents. They flow fully in all directions and are divided into warm and cold.
In northern latitudes, to the equator, dominate North Passat, Gulf Stream and North Atlantic flow. They carry warm waters and delight the world around us with a mild climate and high temperatures. This cannot be said about currents. Labrador and Canary. The latter belong to the cold and create frosty and slushy weather in the adjacent lands.
South of the equator the picture is the same. Here warm ball reigns South Passat, Guinean and Brazilian flow. Cold Western Winds and Bengali they are trying in no way to yield to their more humane colleagues and also make their own possible negative contribution to the formation of the climate of the southern hemisphere. In general, average temperature on the surface of the Atlantic Ocean equals plus 16 ° Celsius. At the equator, it can reach up to 28 ° Celsius. But in the northern latitudes it is very cold – here the water freezes.
From what has been said, it is not difficult to guess that from the north and south the waters of the Atlantic are squeezed by eternal giant ice crusts. The truth about eternity is a little overkill, since very often large blocks of ice are broken off from them and begin to drift slowly towards the equator. Such blocks are called icebergs, and they move to the north of Greenland, up to 40 °. w, and in the south of Antarctica to 40 ° S. sh. Their remains are observed closer to the equator, reaching 31-35 ° southern and northern latitudes.
Very large dimensions – a loose concept. More specifically, there are icebergs, the length of which is tens of kilometers, and the area sometimes exceeds 1000 km². For years these ice floes can travel across the expanses of the ocean, hiding their true size under the water surface.
The fact is that a blue mountain of ice shines above the water, which corresponds to only 10% of the total iceberg volume. The remaining 90% of this block is hidden in the oceanic depths due to the fact that the density of ice is no more than 940 kg / m³, and the density of sea water on the surface ranges from 1000 to 1028 kg / m³. Normal, the average height of an iceberg, as a rule, corresponds to 28-30 meters, its underwater part is slightly more than 100-120 meters.
Meeting with such a sea traveler for ships has never been a joy. The greatest danger he is already in adulthood. By this time, the iceberg significantly thaws, its center of gravity shifts, and a huge ice block turns over. Its underwater part is above water. It does not shine with blueness, but is a dark blue ice cap, which, especially in poor visibility conditions, is very difficult to distinguish at the surface of the ocean.
The death of “Titanic”
A typical example of treachery of floating ice blocks can be the death of the “Titanic”, which occurred on the night of 14 to 15 April 1912. It sank 2 hours and 40 minutes after a collision with an iceberg in the northern waters of the Atlantic Ocean (41 ° 43 ′ 55 ″ N, 49 ° 56 ′ 45 ″ E.). The result was the death of 1496 passengers and crew members.
True, you need to immediately make a reservation: it is rather imprudent to write off everything on the “lost” iceberg. This shipwreck is one of the greatest mysteries of the Atlantic Ocean today. There is still no clue to the causes of the tragedy, although there are many different versions and assumptions.
As expected, the largest passenger ship in the world (length 269 m, width 28.2 m, displacement 46 300t) collided with an iceberg, which had a venerable age and apparently more than once turned in the water. Its dark surface did not give reflections, it merged with the water surface of the ocean, therefore it was very difficult to notice the huge floating ice block in time. The culprit was recognized only when he was 450 meters away from the ship, and not 4-6 km away, as usually happens in such situations.
The death of “Titanic” made a lot of noise. It was a world sensation of the beginning of the second decade of the twentieth century. Mostly everyone was amazed – how could such a huge and reliable ship sank so quickly, dragging hundreds and hundreds of unhappy people to the bottom. Nowadays, many researchers are inclined to see the true causes of the terrible tragedy not in the ill-fated iceberg (although few indirectly deny its indirect role), but in quite other factors, which for some reason, at one time, were hidden from the general public.
Versions, guesses, assumptions
The official conclusion of the commission to investigate the disaster was unambiguous – the ice of the Atlantic proved to be stronger than steel. He ripped the underwater part of the Titanic hull like a tin can. The wound was terrible: its length reached 100 meters, and of the sixteen waterproof compartments, six were damaged. This was enough to ensure that the proud Briton went to the bottom and forever subsided at a tremendous depth, carrying human lives and enormous material values to the sea bottom.
Such a verdict is not convincing for a specialist, and even a person far from shipbuilding understands that the carrying body of a huge liner plying the oceans can in no way resemble a tin can. The melted ice of the old man-iceberg also does not have sufficient hardness, which, judging by the conclusion, should have surpassed the diamond fortress in order to penetrate the steel covering of a multi-ton passenger ship by tens of meters.
One can build various assumptions and hypotheses for an arbitrarily long time, but only practical research can provide answers to all the questions. In this situation, taking into account the depth at which the Titanic started, exploration work became possible not earlier than the 80s of the 20th century. It was at this time that deep-water apparatuses appeared, capable of being at a 4-kilometer depth for a long time.
The first such swallow was the expedition of American oceanographer Robert Ballard, who in September 1985 arrived at the site of the tragedy on the ship “Knor”. She was armed with a deep-water towed complex “Argo”. It was he who determined the depth of the remains of the Titanic. The water column at this place was 3,750 meters. The ship lay on the seabed, split into two parts, the distance between them was approximately 600 meters.
Visible damage that caused the death of the ocean liner was not found. Robert Ballard thought that they were hidden by the ground in which the multi-ton construction was stuck. The torn wound on the Titanic Corps was not found during the second expedition, organized by the American scientist in 1986.
French and American specialists walked along the beaten track.. In the summer of 1987, they arrived in the waters of the Atlantic Ocean and spent two long months at the site of the disaster. Using the deep-sea device “Nautil”, the researchers lifted from the bottom more than 900 items aboard the sunken ship. These were samples of ship utensils, some of which went to museums, and some went to private collections.
Finally, in 1991, the vessel Akademik Mstislav Keldysh arrived at the site of the death of the Titanic.. An international research expedition led by Canadian oceanographer Steve Blask was on board. The expedition had at its disposal two autonomous underwater apparatuses Mir-1 and Mir-2. On them, the researchers made 38 dives. The hull of the vessel was examined, a sample of the side plating was taken, films, videos and photographs were taken.
Despite all the efforts, a torn hole, several tens of meters long, was not found. But they managed to find a hole, the size of which did not exceed a square meter, and numerous cracks along the lines of rivets were noticed.
The steel fragment that broke away from the Titanic’s hull was sent for testing. He was checked for metal brittleness – the conclusion was not comforting: the prototype was notable for its remarkable fragility. This could be attributed to the long 80 years on the seabed, which significantly influenced the properties of steel. Therefore, for the objectivity of the picture was tested a similar piece of metal, preserved at the shipyard since 1911. The result was much the same.
It’s hard to believe, but the Titanic Corps did not meet regulatory requirements.. It was made from a material with a high content of sulfur compounds. The latter gave the steel structure a high fragility, which, in combination with ice water, made it very fragile.
If the hull were made of steel that meets all the norms and requirements, then after contact with the iceberg, it would have sagged, but retained its integrity. In the same situation, the ship hit the iceberg with the starboard – and the blow was of a small force, but the fragile covering of the Titanic could not stand it either. It split along the rivet lines below the waterline. Icy water poured into the openings, which instantly filled the lower compartments and, most likely, caused the explosion of hot steam boilers.
The huge ship began to plunge into the waters of the Atlantic. According to eyewitnesses, at first “Titanic” sank on an even keel, which indicates that the lower compartments were filled with water evenly. Then the trim appeared on the nose. The feed began to rise, reached a vertical position, and the multi-ton colossus very quickly went to the bottom. Already at great depth, by virtue of high pressure, the Titanic split into two parts, which were dragged along the ocean floor to more than 500 meters.
Who benefited from the death of “Titanic”?
It turns out that this catastrophe has nothing to do with the secrets of the Atlantic Ocean: everything seems to be clear. No, no need to rush to conclusions. As already mentioned, there are many versions of the death of the ocean liner, and among them there is not one that can be called the ultimate truth. There are many other assumptions, opinions of very reputable people who consider the cause of a terrible catastrophe from a completely different angle.
So to this day there is a version that the cause of the accident was the White Star Line company itself – the owner of the vessel. Its leaders initially planned the construction of the Titanic with gross violations of all possible rules and regulations. The goal of this tremendous fraud was to obtain a huge insurance that could correct the precarious financial situation of the company and save it from complete collapse.
That is why, the ocean liner, despite warnings about icebergs from ships located in the same area, went as fast as possible (20.5 miles per hour). The task of the captain of the ship was one – to provoke a collision “Titanic” with a huge floating ice floe.
Most likely, no one even could have imagined so many dead people, since by all accounts it appeared that the ship would sink for a long time. The main bet was placed on rescue vessels, which should have enough time to get to the place of the tragedy and have time to save all the passengers and valuables on board. However, an unpredictable fate made its adjustments to the original scenario.
In addition to this rather dubious and unsteady version, there is another one. This is a fire in a coal bunker. During long-term storage, the lower layers of coal begin to smolder, releasing explosive gas. The temperature gradually increases, the concentration of gas vapors increases. In such a situation, the explosion can occur from the usual push. The collision with the iceberg was the detonator that caused a huge surge of energy, which tore and ruined the entire lower part of the vessel.
In a word, even today there is no consensus on the causes of the terrible tragedy. Reveal this mystery of the Atlantic Ocean can only the remains of a ship, resting at great depths. Their scrupulous study by dozens of specialists is possible only in normal terrestrial conditions. To do this, you need to raise the “Titanic” from the bottom of a huge reservoir.
Technically, this is extremely difficult to implement. As for the financial side of the issue, here is a different picture. Although such works will cost a lot of money, they will more than pay off. After all, we must not forget that the ship has gold bars worth 10 million pounds sterling. It also stores jewelry, diamonds, jewels of the richest people in the world who sailed on this ship. Fragments of the body “Titanic”, the remnants of the interior, the dishes will go to the auction “with a bang” at fabulous prices.
If we consider the unfortunate “Titanic” as a source of wealth, then he is not alone. The bottom of the Atlantic Ocean is Klondike, Eldorado. Here lies a huge number of ships that are simply stuffed with precious metals, diamonds, and other valuables that are capable of treating anyone who reaches them. This is exactly the whole question: to break through the thickness of oceanic waters is an extremely difficult task not only for individual adventurers, but also for serious firms and solid financial structures.
Underwater ship graveyards
At the beginning of the XXI century there are many companies specializing in the search for sunken ships. The game is worth the candle, since according to experts, at least 80,000 ships of all countries and shipwrecked ships in the last 400 years, carrying values of $ 600 billion, lie at the bottom of the Atlantic.
One such company, the American company Odyssey, discovered in 2007, in the Canary Islands region, a Spanish sailing vessel. On board were 500 thousand old gold and silver coins. Their total weight reached 17 tons, and the cost was 500 million dollars. This is 100 million dollars more than the wealth that was raised in 1985 from the Spanish galleon, which sank off the coast of Florida in the twenties of the XVII century.
The lion’s share of all values that went to the bottom of the ocean in the XVI and the first half of the XVII centuries, rests precisely on the Spanish courts, which carried an uninterrupted caravan of gold, silver, precious stones and products made of them to America from Europe.
In theory, the good obtained in this way cannot be the property of the state. The government of Spain judged otherwise. At the beginning of the XXI century, it declared 800 Spanish vessels sunk in the XVI-XVIII centuries, carrying illegally acquired utensils – a national treasure. The monetary equivalent of all this wealth is estimated at 130 billion dollars.
Underwater treasures are available to search teams in the coastal areas of the Atlantic Ocean. Here, as a rule, vessels sank, having run aground or reefs. In the vast expanses of water, where galleons, brigantines, frigates and then ships, ships, yachts, battleships went to the bottom underneath the keel, then ships, ships, yachts, battleships went to the bottom, having experienced all the power and strength of ocean storms (the height of the waves in the Atlantic often reaches 10–15 meters) or the cunning and cruelty of pirate ships and enemy submarines during the years of hostilities.
The ratio of ships drowned in the coastal zones and in the open ocean over the past 400 years is 85 to 15. That is, it turns out that the closer to the coast, the more dangerous. Only every seventh ship perished on the vast and majestic expanses of the Atlantic Ocean, the rest of the floating craft sank into the visibility of native or foreign shores, to which, as they say, was within reach.
One of the biggest underwater cemeteries is strait of the English Channel. Its length is 560 km, width in the west is 240 km, in the east it is 32 km, and the average depth is 63 m. Only in some places the depth exceeds this mark and reaches 170 m. There are many shallows here, fogs are frequent. At the bottom of the strait rests countless ships, especially in its western part.
By the number of shipwrecks do not lag behind and water in the area Cape Hatteras (North Carolina, USA). Here is a narrow long spit, the eastern ledge of which is actually the ill-fated cape. This place is characterized by countless shoals, constant storms, fogs, strong currents. Vessels that dared to approach these shores, put themselves in a very real danger – a manifestation of carelessness, frivolity and ignoring the lot, almost constantly, leads to tragic consequences.
Perhaps the most intriguing secret of the Atlantic Ocean can be called Bermuda Triangle. Its tops lie on the southern tip of Florida, Bermuda and Puerto Rico. It enters the so-called Devil’s Belt, which also includes the Devil’s Triangle, located in Pacific waters, around Miyake Island (Japan).
The excitement, around this, at first glance, nothing unremarkable place, arose in the second half of the XX century. Previously, for hundreds of years, everything seemed to be fine. The ships were ceremoniously crossing this ocean space, and the crews on them didn’t even know what mortal danger they were putting themselves.
This outrageous frivolity put an end to 1950. It was then that a small article by the Associated Press correspondent Edward Johnson was published. It was not even an article, but a thin pamphlet, published in Florida in small editions. It had the name “Bermuda Triangle”, and the facts stated in it told about the mysterious disappearances of ships and airplanes in the region of Bermuda.
It did not attract the public’s attention by any side, but apparently made it necessary to draw the attention of individuals feeding on sensations and bestseller circulations. However, it took almost 15 years before the article by Vincent Gladdis entitled “The Deadly Bermuda Triangle” saw the light. It was printed in a 1964 spiritual journal. With a short break, the book of the same author – “Invisible Horizons”. In it, the mysterious part of the ocean was assigned a whole chapter.
A more detailed, solid and capacious work was submitted to the readers after ten years. The author of this bestseller, named simply and succinctly, “The Bermuda Triangle”, was Charles Berlitz. It contained a lot of data on the mysterious disappearances of ships and aircraft, and also described incomprehensible phenomena associated with changes in the properties of time and space. Reputable publishers of various countries reprinted this book, and, in a short time, tens of millions of citizens living in different parts of the world learned about the Bermuda Triangle.
In any case, there will always be corrosive skeptics, who don’t feed them with bread, but give a spoonful of tar to spoil the barrel of honey. The blow to such a well and dynamically spreading sensation was struck as early as next 1975 by the American journalist Lawrence David Couchet. This gentleman did not leave a stone unturned from all the arguments and statements of Charles Berlitz in the pages of his book The Secret of the Bermuda Triangle Solved.
To the credit of the author, the content of the book is by no means an unproved criticism, based on envy of a more successful and sneaky colleague, but a serious study based on painstaking examination of documents and eyewitness accounts. It is on the basis of factual material that many errors, inaccuracies, and sometimes even outright hoaxes in the work of Charles Berlitz were revealed.
The conclusion of the book by Lawrence David Couchet is unequivocal: nothing mysterious, supernatural, inexplicable in the Bermuda Triangle does not occur. The statistics of the tragedies on this part of the Atlantic Ocean correspond to the similar data in any other place of the huge reservoir. Mysterious disappearances of material objects are invented, and stories about ships abandoned by crews, lost time, and instantaneous movement in space for hundreds of kilometers is a myth.
Critics of abnormal phenomena are sober-minded people. In order to convince them of something, you need to provide iron evidence of this phenomenon. But in everyday life is not so simple. What lies beyond the real, defies explanation from the point of view of the laws of physics, mechanics or chemistry. Here, the human imagination and belief in the mysterious and unusual are more likely to dominate.
By the way, many paranormal phenomena that occur in the Bermuda Triangle can be interpreted as a direct consequence of the usual banal processes occurring in the waters of the Atlantic. For example, the mysterious disappearance of ships has a simple explanation related to methane emissions. This gas escapes from the gas hydrates deposits located on the seabed and saturates the water. The density of the latter drops sharply. A ship that has landed on such a section of the ocean is instantly sinking.
The methane escaped to freedom is not limited to the aquatic environment. It rises into the air and also reduces its density. This can lead to the death of aircraft, which is almost impossible to explain to people on earth. Do not forget that the gas dissipates very quickly both in water and in air. That is, he is a murderer, leaving no trace behind.
Anomalies over time can be explained by increased activity of the magnetic field in the zone of the Bermuda triangle. Passengers of the aircraft who have appeared in a bunch of magnetic forces can be convinced of their impact by looking at the hands of the wrist watch stopped or slowed down. After some time, the negative factor disappears, the clock again starts to go normally, but all without exception are behind the same number of minutes. This gives rise to the false opinion that the plane was lost in another dimension.
If we talk about ships found in the ocean, on which there was not a single crew member, here you can blame the infrasound on the water surface under certain conditions. The human brain, heart, other organs of his body – they all have their own frequency of oscillation. If some of them coincide with the frequency of the infrasound, then the resulting resonance can ruthlessly hit the psyche of people, plunge them into horror and panic, make them jump overboard and die in the water.
All the arguments presented look quite convincing and realistic. But we must not forget that this is not evidence, but only assumptions. Proponents of the paranormal version can also put their vision of the problem to the public, which will be no less convincing and will find many supporters.
Where is the truth? Probably, as always, in the middle. A sober look combined with belief in the unusual and supernatural will be more productive in solving the riddles of not only the Bermuda Triangle, but also other mysteries of the Atlantic Ocean, of which there are a great many on its surface and in the dark depths.
Article written by ridar-shakin
Based on materials from foreign and Russian publications