Polish explorers reveal how important is one of their latest expeditions. They state that an underwater cave in the Czech Republic holds the world record for the deepest such structure. It can be found in the East of the country, near the town of Hranice.
A team of Polish specialists, led by Krzysztof Starnawski, ventured to explore the underwater relief in the Czech Republic. According to their measurements, the underwater cave is four hundred and four meters deep. The leader of the team himself dived two hundred meters inside the grotto. He got the information on the total depth of the hole from a robot sent to explore further.
This isn’t Starnawski’s first attempt at measuring the underwater cave in the Czech Republic. He tried to do it last year too, when he managed to dive for more than two hundred meters, still without reaching the bottom of the pit. This is why this time he got help from specially design machines. Starnawski has been endeavoring to discover the depth of the cavity for almost seventeen years.
The recently explored cave is called Hranice Abyss or Hranická Propast. Due to its dimensions, it outranked another underwater cave in Italy, called Pozzo del Merro. It is only 392 meters deep and lost its first-place title as the world’s deepest aquatic cave.
Exploring underwater caves is not an easy task, as the specialists explain. Explorers have to face harsh conditions, such as low temperatures. According to Krzysztof Starnawski, the water in the cave is fifteen degrees Celsius cold. In addition to this, the explorers also expose themselves to substances in the water which affect human skin.
Krzysztof Starnawski relied on a Remotely Operated Underwater Vehicle (ROV) to continue the exploration for him this year. The device was specially designed for the expedition. The company which created the device is GRALmarine.
Specialists believe that Hranice Abyss was formed due to the long interaction of water and limestone. The water simply carved the soft stone in time, resulting in this 404 meters deep tunnel. Starnawski’s first expeditions were interrupted because the cave was too narrow. Further dissolution of the limestone, as well as natural passages, made it easier this time for explorers to proceed.
The Polish explorers take great pride in their accomplishment. At the same time, they are aware that there are plenty of underwater caves that haven’t been explored yet, and which could be even deeper than Hranice Abyss. However, the world of science is not a competition, but an enormous encyclopedia, always willing to receive new entries.
Image courtesy of: Wikipedia