Saturday, December 24, 2011

Nigeria on alert as Shell announces worst oil spill in a decade

From TheGuardian

Another oil spill : Shell, the oil company says up to 40,000 barrels of crude oil was spilled 75 miles off the coast of the Niger delta.

Nigerian coastal and fishing communities were on Thursday put on alert after Shell admitted to an oil spill that is likely to be the worst in the area for a decade, according to government officials.

The company said up to 40,000 barrels of crude oil was spilled on Wednesday while it was transferred from a floating oil platform to a tanker 75 miles off the coast of the Niger delta.
All production from the Bonga field, which produces around 200,000 barrels a day, was last night suspended.

An engineer from Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company describes the importance of safety on Bonga, a deep-water oil production facility offshore Nigeria.

"Early indications show that less than 40,000 barrels of oil have leaked in total. Spill response procedures have been initiated and emergency control and spill risk procedures are up and running," said Tony Okonedo, a Shell Nigeria spokesman.

Satellite pictures obtained by independent monitors Skytruth suggested that the spill was 70km-long and was spread over 923 square kilometers (356 sq miles).
But a leading Nigerian human rights group said Shell's figures about the quantity of oil spilled or the clean-up could not be relied on.
"Shell says 40,000 barrels were spilled and production was shut but we do not trust them because past incidents show that the company consistently under-reports the amounts and impacts of its carelessness," said Nnimmo Bassey, head of Environmental Rights Action, based in Lagos.
"We are alerting fisher folks and coastal communities to be on the look out. It just adds to the list of Shell's environmental atrocities in the Niger delta."
The spill, one of the worst off the coast of Nigeria in 10 years, is particularly embarrassing for Shell, coming only four months after a major UN study said it could take Shell and other oil companies 30 years and $1bn to clean spills in Ogoniland, one small part of the oil-rich delta.

The company also admitted responsibility in August for two major spills in the Bodo region of the delta that took place in 2008, but has yet to pay compensation.
Shell, which works in partnership with the Nigerian government in the delta, claims that 98% of all its oil spills are caused by vandalism, theft or sabotage by militants and only a minimal amount by deteriorating infrastructure.
But this is disputed by communities.

Yesterday Shell said it had also closed a Gulf of Mexico deep drilling operation after spilling 319 barrels of contaminated fluids.

Links :
  • Wired : Nigeria oil spill raises concerns about new drilling tech
  • BBC : Nigeria oil spill could hit fisheries
  • Shell : Bonga oil leak updates

Friday, December 23, 2011

The Falcon Maltese


Tom Perkins had done it all.
He'd made a fortune, conquered Silicon Valley, even been Danielle Steel's fifth husband for a time.
His venture capital firm, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, was an early backer of Genentech, Netscape, and Google.
But when he turned 70 a few years ago, Perkins decided to do something even grander and a bit crazier: He would build the biggest, riskiest, fastest, most technologically advanced, single-hulled sailing mega yacht in the world.

The 289-foot Maltese Falcon, launched in spring 2006, is that engineering dream come to life.
There's no official definition of a megayacht, but every one agrees they're longer than 250 feet and tend to be triumphs of excess, with opulent staterooms, stainless steel and leather galore, plasma TVs — even their own speedboats and jet skis.
To accommodate these toys, all mega yachts used to be powerboats, for the simple reason that sailboats must be reasonably svelte.
But Perkins insisted on sail power — and refused to compromise on speed or lavish appointments.
The solution was to go long, since (other things being equal) the longer the hull, the faster a sailboat can go.
The result is the perfect blend of ego and utility, a $130 million wonder that represents the most daring advance in sailing technology in 150 years.
If the 1,367-ton Falcon were anchored in New York Harbor, its masts would nearly reach the tablet in the arm of the Statue of Liberty.
The exterior has teak decks, a varnished cap rail, and exquisitely finished surfaces — all attributes of a classic ship — yet the overall look is sleek, metallic, and ultramodern, almost foreboding.
When Darth Vader builds his own intergalactic yacht, it will look like this.

Under sail, the square-rigged Falcon evokes the magnificent clipper ships that raced across the oceans in the late 19th century.
But Perkins' creation is more New Old Thing than mere tribute to the past.
The heart of the boat's technology is a novel rigging system called the DynaRig, designed by Dutch naval architect Gerald Dijkstra and based on a half-century-old German concept.
The genius — and risk — of the DynaRig is its use of freestanding masts that rotate to adjust sail trim and tack the boat.
There are practically no external ropes or wires, no traditional rigging of any sort to brace the spars or control the nearly 26,000 square feet of sail.
The 15 sails deploy at the push of a button, rolling out from inside each hollow mast along recessed tracks on stationary horizontal yardarms.
When Dijkstra's drawings first came in, the CEO of Perini Navi, the Italian company that built the ship, muttered, "Whatever that is, it's not going to sail." Fellow mega yacht owner and media tycoon Rupert Murdoch looked at them and asked Perkins, "Is it going to look so frightening that people won't go on the boat?"
Murdoch isn't easily intimidated.
But three towering 192-foot masts — unsupported by the usual fore and aft stays and shrouds on the sides — would scare the Top-Siders off even Columbus or Magellan.
Each mast is secured to the hull by two huge steel bearings.
The three assemblies — mast, bearings, motors, and fittings — each weigh well over 30 tons. That's a lot of material twisting and bending overhead in a gale.
The key is carbon fiber.
It's exceptionally strong and light, and it doesn't fatigue like metal, allowing the mast walls to be remarkably thin.
Near the deck, where they're subject to the greatest loads, the walls measure just 5 inches thick. Toward the top, they taper to half an inch — no thicker than sturdy cardboard.
To measure the stress on the masts, a fiber-optic network is embedded in the layers of carbon-fiber laminate.
These 0.01-inch-diameter cables contain sensors that relay real-time data about the structural health of the masts to a graphic display on the bridge.
If the forces on them become too severe — masts can snap, and on a vessel this size, the results might be catastrophic — Perkins can dump wind out of the sails or reduce sail area.

Dozens of microprocessors, connected by 131,000 feet of hidden cable and wire, automate the operation, allowing Perkins and his crew to control the boat nearly effortlessly.
Seventy-five sealed motors, 60 for unfurling and 15 for furling, are used to manage the sails. They are synchronized by computer, but the skipper still needs to implement each step: Perkins insisted that electronics not govern the whole process.
The vessel would not be sailed by computer.
"No way Bill Gates is controlling my boat," he likes to crack.
"I don't ever want to have to press Control-Alt-Delete to restart, to make my boat go."

Links :

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Birth of an island

Kavachi is one of the most active submarine volcanoes in the world.
Geolocalization : 9°1' S / 157°57' E

From GlobalVolcanismProgram

Kavachi, one of the most active submarine volcanoes in the SW Pacific, occupies an isolated position in the Solomon Islands far from major aircraft and shipping lanes.

Kavachi, sometimes referred to as Rejo te Kvachi ("Kavachi's Oven"), is located south of Vangunu Island only about 30 km north of the site of subduction of the Indo-Australian plate beneath the Pacific plate.
The shallow submarine basaltic-to-andesitic volcano has produced ephemeral islands up to 1 km long many times since its first recorded eruption during 1939.
Residents of the nearby islands of Vanguna and Nggatokae (Gatokae) reported "fire on the water" prior to 1939, a possible reference to earlier submarine eruptions.
The roughly conical volcano rises from water depths of 1.1-1.2 km on the north and greater depths to the south.

Frequent shallow submarine and occasional subaerial eruptions produce phreatomagmatic explosions that eject steam, ash, and incandescent bombs above the sea surface.
On a number of occasions lava flows were observed on the surface of ephemeral islands.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Four things I learned on a round-the-world yacht race

Rough Weather Sailing - BT Global Challenge 2000

From TonyHaile

11 years ago this month, I stepped aboard a 72-foot racing cutter affectionately called The Good Ship Logica and began a 10-month round the world yacht race, the only one to go around the world against the currents and prevailing winds.
Below deck, I was the geek, making sure the satellite could broadcast despite 90ft waves blocking line of sight; above deck I was the Bowman, standing at the pointy end and getting the shit kicked out of me by walls of water as our team struggled to take down huge sails that the wind wanted to keep up.

Today I learned that someone mishandled a crane in Portsmouth during a routine maneuver and dropped Logica, effectively killing it.
This was the boat that I learned to trust to keep me safe through hurricanes, lightning strikes and the worst the Southern Ocean had to offer.
It was the boat that I cursed every time a rampant wave picked me up and tossed me down the deck like a rag doll, slamming me into rigging and stanchions.
It was the boat in whose bowels I spent cold hours pumping water into buckets after the electric pump failed, the boat that taught me how to sleep on a rollercoaster while a generator roared next to my head, the boat I loved, heart and soul.
Now she’s gone.

So today I’ve been thinking about the lessons she taught me.

The opposite of fear is not bravery, it’s initiative

When my first hurricane at sea hit, it came out of nowhere.
I was delivering a boat (the older, smaller sister of Logica) across the Atlantic from Plymouth to Boston.
The boom swung across the deck with such ferocity that it ripped the pulley system that controlled it out of the deck and flung it out to sea; the third wave took the heavily bolted down compass and consigned that to the ocean.
Our skipper was up on deck so fast it seemed incredible that he had just been asleep and, screaming above the waves, he got us working to try to bring down the mainsail and control the wayward boom.
Our boat was so far over on its side that the mast was dipping into the ocean and water was starting to drag the mainsail and the boat further down into the lifeless grey.
I don’t remember being frightened, at least not in the way I had always thought about fear; traditional fear involves some prediction of a future you would rather avoid.
At this point, I couldn’t begin to think about a future at all.
I just remember feeling utterly drained of initiative. I would do whatever anyone asked me to do, but I was utterly unable to think or to act for myself.

I brooded over that night for months afterwards, dwelling on my own inadequate response when faced with a true crisis.
I knew I was due to set out on a round-the-world yacht race the next year and was terrified that I didn’t have what it takes, that I would let down my team when it mattered most.

In October 2000, my skipper came below decks and asked us if we had ever seen the Perfect Storm (It had occurred on the Grand Banks near our position at the time).
“Yeah, three storms converging on the Flemish Cap” replied Adam, the bowman on the other watch. “We’re in luck” the skipper replied, “we’ve only got two storms converging on us”.
We watched the scarlet dawn rising and remarked upon the sailors motto ‘red sky at night, sailor’s delight; red sky at morning, we’re fucked’.

We had more warning this time, but the hurricane still hit with a vengeance.
There’s something about the sea when the wind gets above 70 knots of breeze (80mph), it becomes gunmetal grey, as if not even colour could live in these conditions.
Our bow team struggled up to the foredeck to take down the headsails and put up our storm staysail.
Orange and bulletproof, we needed it up if we were going to be able to steer a course through this storm at all.
This was the moment I had thought about for years, but for some reason I was not the same man who had been so useless on that previous voyage.
I was able to think, to act on my own initiative and help my team to survive.
It was a revelation and gave me hope that the ability to lead in a crisis was not inbuilt from birth but could be learned, that I could become better.
The lesson I took from this is that bravery is a term applied retroactively, after the work has been done and the danger has passed.
In a situation that engenders fear and terror, don’t ask yourself to be brave; simply ask yourself to act.
The bravery comes later.

Finding fault is a luxury best saved for tomorrow

My first day of training on the yacht and I’d already managed to break something.
A sail was tumbling down and the boat was losing speed.
The first mate darted across the boat to find out what had happened and I started in on a long and rambling tale of the series of unfortunate events which had, through no fault of my own, caused the damage we were looking at right now.
I was barely three sentences in, when the mate interrupted me: “I don’t give a crap whose fault it was, I just need to know what to fix”.

The words hit me like a sledgehammer, my concern had been with my perceived reputation and standing as a competent crewman, his concern was simply that the boat wasn’t working right and yet it needed to be.
Identifying the incompetent culprit responsible or working out the precise series of events leading us to here were luxuries that could wait for another time because right now the boat needed to be fixed before we lost too much speed and time.
If I was ever going to truly pull my weight with the crew, I would have to learn to be ok with people potentially thinking the worst of me or ascribing failures to me that were not directly my own fault, what mattered was keeping the boat moving.
I find thinking of that day instructive when facing a board meeting, finding fault or assigning blame is an idle luxury, what matters is keeping the company moving.

Do your thinking before the crisis

We were deep in the Southern Ocean, one of the nastiest environments on earth and three of us were sitting on the windward side of the deck (the high side) with little to do but endure the waves crashing over us and make sure the helmsman didn’t get hurt.
Our skipper came up on deck to take a look around and spotted a trailing rope on the leeward side that he wanted to tidy.
He made his way down to where the deck was skimming the water and began to bring in the rope when a rogue wave took him by surprise and knocked him down the deck.
All three of us leaped forward to grab him before he was washed overboard, but two of us were stopped short by our safety lines like a dog reaching the limits of its leash.

Only Glyn, had the presence of mind to first unhook his safety line get across to the other side, reattach and reach our skipper before it was too late.
While I and my team-mate had been sitting there grumpily bearing the waves and wishing we were elsewhere, Glyn had been running through scenarios in his head and working out potential plans of action should any of them occur.
He knew that there isn’t necessarily time in a crisis to stop, assess the best course of action and then enact it, so you have to do your thinking beforehand.
Be constantly working through ‘what if?’ scenarios so that your brain has the advantage when an accident happens and you are not left flailing helplessly at the end of a line watching someone get washed away.

Leave it on the Last Wave

Our round the world yacht race involved putting 18 people in a tin can, plunging it in salt water and shaking it violently for 10 months.
People hallucinate through lack of sleep, the unconscious tapping of teeth can provoke a knife fight (which occurred on another yacht in a previous race) and one simply can’t avoid someone if you have an argument
The only way for your team to mentally survive in that kind of environment is to embody the motto of ‘Leave it on the last wave’.
The argument you had during a sail change?
That happened on a wave way in the distant, leave it out there where it belongs.
The time you almost came to blows with a team mate over something so minor you both can’t remember, leave it on the wave where it started because the wind has changed and there are new sails to be put up and a new course to take advantage of.
The lesson on a boat is clear, you can either let go of slights or negative emotions or you can damn near kill someone.
There’s not much wiggle room in between.

These are some of the gifts that Logica gave me, my friends have often remarked upon how the person who joined the race in September 2000 was utterly different from the man who left it in July of 2001.
I miss my boat, I miss my team and I will always treasure what I learned on her deck.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Hold fast

Hold Fast from Moxie Marlinspike

Stories of maniac sailors, anarchist castaways, and the voyage of the S/V Pestilence...
This is a great short on 4 people who spent some time fixing up a sailboat and then sailing it down to the Bahamas.

Over the course of two winters, four members of the Anarchist Yacht Club rescued a derelict boat from the inhospitable waters of Ft. Lauderdale, named it the S/V Pestilence, and sailed south to Haiti.
Hold Fast describes what drew these friends to the ocean, and tells the story of what they discovered in the sea.
It paints a picture of the S/V Pestilence in the context of all the sailing maniacs who have come before them, and ultimately attempts to suggest that the secret is always to begin.

Take note: it takes a second to get into it, but becomes addictive.
As one commenter wrote: this is a jewel of sailing, low budget videos!
If you will survive through the first minute or so with way too much black in editing, you enter an over one hour long story with almost NPR / PBS documentary quality...

Links :
  • BS blog : Hold fast

Monday, December 19, 2011

Christmas Island seamounts: is the mystery finally solved?

The CHRISP forms a diffuse volcanic belt with an E–W length of ~1,800 km and a N–S width of ~600 km and is divided into four sub-provinces: (1) Argo Basin (136 Myr), (2) Eastern Wharton Basin (94–115 Myr), (3) Vening-Meinesz (64–95 Myr; Christmas Island 37–44 and 4 Myr), and (4) the Cocos/Keeling (47–56 Myr) volcanic provinces.
Also shown is Outsider Seamount (53 Myr). Plate motion vector and rate from UNAVCO model.


If you ever find yourself on a leisurely submarine ride through the northeastern Indian Ocean, be on the lookout for some amazing views: more than 50 large seamounts, or underwater mountains, dot the ocean floor, some rising as high as 3 miles (4,500 meters).

The Christmas Island Seamount Province, as the area is known, spans a 417,000-square-mile (1 million square kilometers) swath of seafloor.
Just how the massive underwater structures got there has been up for debate, but some new geochemical detective work may have solved the mystery.
The seamounts are made of recycled rocks from the ancient supercontinent of Gondwana, said geochemist Kaj Hoernle of the University of Kiel in Germany.
Their turbulent geological history explains the massive size and puzzling placement of these features.

Ubiquitous and mysterious

Tens of thousands of seamounts line the floors of the world's oceans, but exactly how most of these formed is unclear.

Some, like the Hawaiian–Emperor seamount chain that extends northwest from the Hawaiian Islands, formed over hotspots in the mantle, just as the islands themselves did.
Other seamount chains were created when tectonic plate boundaries and other fractures in the ocean crust allowed lava to escape and harden at the surface.

Lavas on Christmas Island, north-east Indian Ocean

But the Christmas Island Seamount Province doesn't fit either of these models, Hoernle said. The structures are too widespread and diffuse to have formed over a single hotspot; they’re also aligned perpendicularly along breaks in the ocean crust, which means they didn't form above a fracture.
"We knew they were volcanic," Hoernle told OurAmazingPlanet, "but beyond that, it was more or less a mystery."

Geochemistry to the rescue

To solve the puzzle, Hoernle and his colleagues set out to map and collect samples of the seamounts.

The evidence they brought back to the lab told an interesting story: The rocks' geochemical signatures didn't match those from mid-ocean ridges or hotspot volcanoes.

Instead, they matched the signatures of continental rocks — in particular, rocks from northwestern Australia.

Around 150 million years ago, greater India, Australia and Burma — all once part of this supercontinent — began to rift away from each other.
This created the spreading center (or mid-ocean ridge) that eventually formed the Indian Ocean. As this was happening, the bottom part of the continental crust delaminated, or "peeled off in a sheet," Hoernle said.
The peeled-off continental crust mixed with the upper mantle, heated up and eventually was pulled to the surface again at the Indian Ocean spreading center.
"When the spreading center passed over that area, it essentially sucked the continental bits and pieces up again," Hoernle said. "Because these pieces have more volatile content (such as water and carbon dioxide), they produced more melted material than the normal upper mantle, and formed seamounts instead of the normal ocean crust."

The first seamount in the Christmas Island Province formed around 136 million years ago.
The spreading center continued to create seamounts until about 47 million years ago, when it migrated away from the part of the mantle containing the recycled continental crust, Hoernle said.
The team's findings are detailed in the December issue of the journal Nature Geoscience

Links :

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Book review: ‘Oceans Odyssey’

From TheEpochTimes

I met Greg Stemm’s partner in Odyssey Marine Exploration in South Dakota.
Of all places, South Dakota is not a likely place for an ocean explorer to be.
If he had been there when the ocean covered the place, Don Mann would have to be a lot older than he is.
Actually Mann was on another odyssey, filming for television’s “Primal Quest Badlands” episode.
Greg and Don’s quest underwater has taken them around the planet.
Their accomplishments have brought amazing deep ocean discoveries that include the steamship Republic that sank off Georgia in 1866, with a fortune in gold aboard.
(see NYTimes)

Odyssey Marine’s endeavors are the stuff of front-page newspaper headlines all over the world.
Recently The New York Times carried a story about their work with the British government on the discovery and planned exploitation of the British steamship Mantola.
A German U-boat sank the Mantola in 1917, off the Irish coast.
It went to the bottom with 20 tons of silver bullion.
That’s $18 million today.

Undaunted by success Odyssey discovered another prize off the Irish coast laden with 240 tons of silver.
The cargo is estimated to be worth $200 million according to the report.
The Gairsoppa was sunk by a German torpedo in 1941.
Odyssey is working with the British government and will partner shares.
Oddly enough the British Indian Steam Navigation Company owned both ships, one sunk in World War I, the other in World War II by German submarines.
The Mantola sank in the deep ocean a mile down.

Controversy still rages between private enterprise and some jealous academics about who gets what on the ocean floor.
By and large this often means who gets the credit for major discoveries.
One fact is very clear: if shipwrecks are not found, studied, mapped, and their cargoes recovered in an archaeologically acceptable way, the knowledge they contain and their valuable artifacts will be lost forever.
In this pursuit, no government and no academic institution has ever had the funding, resources, or expertise to do the job of deep-water archaeology properly.

The prejudice among academics and government bureaucrats has always been that private enterprise can never be compatible with archaeological recovery of shipwrecks.
Sadly, corruption in government labs and storage facilities resulted in the loss of major treasures that were recovered by the late Mel Fisher and his team of divers as well as others working with the State of Florida.

Private sector involvement has made the only significant contributions to, not only knowledge, but to public museum collections of maritime history in recent years.
Certainly this is true in deep-sea technology to a very large extent.

Oceans Odyssey by Greg Stemm and Sean Kingsley is a two-volume presentation of astonishing marine research and exploration that will open the eyes of experts and enthusiasts, alike.
Two major books have been recently published by Odyssey Marine Exploration as reports of their work.
The two volumes will be part of continuing efforts by Greg Stemm, Sean Kingsley, and Odyssey’s curator Ellen Gerth to document and publish, with scientific papers and reports, the results of their work on the SS Republic, HMS Sussex, HMS Victory, and other vessels lost in the deep oceans.

Both books are major undertakings in full-color, large 9” x 11” format.
Ocean Odyssey I contains 288 pages, Ocean Odyssey II is 354 pages.
The books publish papers produced by archaeologists and scientists working on the projects.
Some are technical or scientific and all are well researched.
The editors make no attempt to dissuade opinion since one paper contains the pros and cons of treasure hunters being involved with shipwrecks at all, authored by an archaeologist.
The color photography obtained in situ of deep-water shipwrecks is not only amazing it is beguiling.
To be able to see clearly about .31 miles beneath the surface, and see what no one has seen before since the ship went down, is an incredible feat.

On the SS Republic site, located about 93 miles off Georgia’s coast, in about .31 miles of water, the scatter fields of cargo and artifacts are revealed in minute detail in the pictures.
Recovered from the depths were 51,404 gold coins from the paddle-wheeler that sank in a terrible storm on October 25, 1865, while en route from New York to New Orleans.
Volume I contains reports of the field work, and site history, the cargo, coin collection, bottles, and other artifacts recovered from the shipwreck.

The book also documents what has been called the Blue China shipwreck off Jacksonville, Fla. with its cargo of porcelains.
When the 80-gun HMS Sussex went down in 1694, it was a major loss to the Royal Navy.
Now the wreck has been brought to light again with its history coming back to life.
Volume I describes Odyssey’s work on the about 109-yards-deep HMS Victory lost in the western English Channel.
The shipwrecks have been explored using Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) equipped with cameras and powerful lights.
Intricately engineered limpets with rubber suction cups have been used to recover artifacts from the deep wreck sites after methodically mapping and recording the finds.

Greg Stemm and Odyssey Marine found the first colonial deep-water Spanish shipwreck in 1989.
Their excitement at the discovery challenged them.
Stemm’s introduction proclaims that there are some 3 million shipwrecks worldwide.
Many of the shallow water wrecks have already been pillaged before any archaeology could be performed.
Deep ocean wrecks were raked over by fishing trawlers and many sites have been destroyed by natural events.
What Stemm and his team have proved is that archaeology can be successfully performed using remote vehicles.
Odyssey’s engineers are responsible for developing the technology, at great cost, to make this possible.

In Stemm’s words, “We found that even in deep water, shipwrecks were being destroyed at an alarming rate and that the politics of underwater cultural heritage were so complex that some government bureaucrats were happier to see shipwrecks being destroyed in situ than to consider a new private sector model for managing cultural heritage. In addition, a handful of archaeologists in positions of power were dead set against the private sector coming into ‘their’ territory, a perceived threat to their funding sources and monopoly on underwater archaeology.”
Stemm uses the example of their discovery in 2008, of Admiral Sir John Balchin’s HMS Victory in the English Channel.
The shipwreck is badly damaged by trawling activities and natural causes, according to the book, documented with deep-sea photographs.

Volume II describes the UNESCO 2001 Convention on shipwrecks and its potential controversial application unless the requirement to work with others is enhanced.
Many German U-boats from World War II have been located by Odyssey Marine’s deep ocean surveys.
They have documented the U-325, U-400, U-650, U-1021, and U-1208.
Volume II also carefully describes in minute detail a carpenter’s rule found on their site 35F.
The book includes a paper about brass guns from HMS Victory.
One paper describes La Marquise de Tourny, a Bordeaux Mid-18th Century Armed privateer’s Art and Archaeology.
The volume includes additional carefully drawn papers about the Jacksonville Blue China wreck.
It was found to be a Mid-19th Century American schooner.
Curator Ellen Gerth and her colleagues describe the Ceramic Assemblage as well as the Glass Assemblage and Clay Tobacco Pipes found on the Blue China wreck site, about .23 miles deep and 70 miles off Jacksonville.
Photomosaics of the wreck site give clear details of the in situ wreckage that was first discovered by fishermen trawling the area over the last 40 years.
Trawlers dredged up porcelain artifacts in their nets.

For the academic, researcher, historian, shipwreck buff, diver, and ocean enthusiast Odyssey Marine’s two-volume set is indispensable.
While the papers are scientific they are easy to read and fascinating.
The photographs are amazing in fidelity and content.
The information contained in the volumes would require years of research to find in scattered archives.
The discoveries themselves are news of the century.
As reference books, the two volumes are required for archaeologists and maritime historians.
Additional volumes are planned and will be published as new material comes to light and the research is completed.

Links :
  • GeoGarage blog : British shipwreck with a fortune in silver on board discovered in Atlantic