July 29, 2008
Head of METROPOL Group M. Slipenchuk makes first deep submersion in Lake Baikal with the crew of manned submersible “Mir-1”
On July 29 the first deep submersions of manned submersibles
Mir-1 and Mir-2 took place in the deepest place of Lake Baikal
between the Olkhon Island and Svyatoy Nos Peninsula in the
framework of the International research expedition “Mir” on the
Baikal”, which was organized by the METROPOL Group and the Fund for
protection of Lake Baikal.
Approximately at 13:30 local time (8:30 Moscow time) “Mir-1” began
to submerge. The crew of the craft included Head of the METROPOL
Group, President of the Guardianship Board of the Fund for
protection of Lake Baikal M. Slipenchuk, President of the
Republic of Buryatia V. Nagovitsyn, and Head of laboratory of
manned submersibles of the P.P. Shirshov Institute of Oceanology of
Russian Academy of Science, Chairman of the Technical Board of the
Fund for protection of Lake Baikal A. Sagalevich.
The manned submersible “Mir-1” descended from the Metropolia
special-purpose vessel, reached the bottom of the lake and
installed a 50-cm high trihedron pyramid at a depth of 1580 meters.
The sides of the pyramid feature the coats of arms of Russia and
Buryatia and an inscription 85 years of the Republic of
“Mir-2” under the command of Fund Technical Board member E.
Chernyaev also reached the bottom of Lake Baikal and put there
titanium flags of the Russian Federation and the Republic of
Buryatia, as well as a capsule with a message to descendants on
behalf of the Fund for protection of Lake Baikal.
Head of the research expedition, President of the Fund for
protection of Lake Baikal A. Chilingarov supervised the progress of
the expedition from the Metropolia special-purpose vessel.
The submersion of “Mir-1” and “Mir-2” craft to the bottom of Lake
Baikal lasted close to 5 hours. During the submergence the craft
took samples of bedrock and water and obtained the latest data on
the state or fauna and flora in Baikal, as well as new information
on tectonic processes at the bed of the Lake.
As submersions were completed, members of the International
scientific research expedition “Mir” on Baikal” held a press
conference on Metropolia special-purpose vessel, in which A.N.
Chilingarov, M.V. Slipenchuk and other crewmembers
Head of METROPOL Group and President of the Guardianship Board of
the Fund for protection of Lake Baikal M. Slipenchuk told reporters
that “Mir” submersed not for the sake of a record, but to obtain
new scientific data for the development of Russian science. Head of
the “Mir” on the Baikal” expedition A. Chilingarov addressed the
journalists and thanked M. Slipenchuk for assistance in the
organization of the expedition and specifically underlined that it
is a major event for the benefit of Russia.
President of Buryatia V. Nagovitsyn, who was also among “Mir” crew,
thanked the leadership of the Fund for protection of Lake Baikal
for the possibility to submerge and personally see that the bottom
of the lake is clean and there is no garbage down there. To confirm
the words all the seven participants of the expedition drank water
from a capsule that was filled in at the bottom of the Baikal.
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