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Not quite 20,000 leagues under the sea. Our apologies.
February 24, 2012 10:35 AM   Subscribe

The BBC has produced a fabulous infographic showing the ocean zones: Sunlight, Twilight, Midnight, Lower Midnight, and The Trenches. The page also includes videos showing: what happens to material at 100, 1000, and 10,000 meters down; the animals living in the Abyssal Plains (described in a lovely Scottish accent); and the story of Jacques Piccard and Don Walsh going down to the Mariana Trench in 1960. No one has been back there since, but director James Cameron and Richard Branson are among the contenders who are going to make a go of it. (Rumour has it that Cameron intends to be the sole person in the sub, while Branson is just financing a team.) Meanwhile, the Doer team (backed by Eric Schmidt of Google), says it's all about the science and not just being first in this century's race. And there's even a yellow submarine for the rest of us, if by "rest of us" one means "has $250,000 to spare for a single trip". Don't forget to click the links at the top of the infographic page to see everything.
posted by maudlin (17 comments total) 27 users marked this as a favorite

 
One point that may not be clear from the infographic: while creatures in the Midnight zone produce true bio-luminescence, the creatures in the Twilight zone merely sparkle.
posted by maudlin at 10:36 AM on February 24, 2012 [6 favorites]


the story of Jacques Piccard . . . going down to the Mariana Trench in 1960

Okay, that makes me think of both Jacques Cousteau and Jean-Luc Picard, going boldly where non one has gone before -- in the ocean.
posted by SpacemanStix at 10:49 AM on February 24, 2012 [3 favorites]


Lower Midnight and the Trenches is the name of my goth lounge band.
posted by Faint of Butt at 11:08 AM on February 24, 2012 [9 favorites]


I saw that photo at very bottom of the infographic and immediately wondered when Buster Keaton did sci-fi, and why wasn't I told about this?!
posted by echo target at 11:17 AM on February 24, 2012


How did you know I spent an embarassing chunk of yesterday in a clicktrance reading about aquatic zones?

Epipelagic. Mesopelagic. Bathypelagic. Abyssopelagic. Hadopelagic (like, say the nether regions of the Mariana Trench) is STILL OPEN in another tab, along with pictures of Things That Live There. They named it after Hades. For a reason.

Weird.
posted by louche mustachio at 11:20 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


I also hope that whatever happens to James Cameron will convince him to not make things teal and orange anymore. There is no teal and orange on the Abyssal Plain.
posted by louche mustachio at 11:23 AM on February 24, 2012


Every time I see more deep ocean lifeforms, the more fascinated I get. Thanks for posting this.
posted by immlass at 11:29 AM on February 24, 2012


Okay, that makes me think of both Jacques Cousteau and Jean-Luc Picard, going boldly where non one has gone before -- in the ocean.

Jean-Luc Picard is named after him, so this is not a surprise. His father was the inspiration for Prof. Tournesol of Tintin fame and actually resembles him so well that I can't help but find this picture comic.
posted by atrazine at 12:07 PM on February 24, 2012 [2 favorites]


I've always liked this height chart for measuring ocean depths as after a certain point there's basically nothing that'll measure up. The BBC's pic is really good though I suspect a cover-up of the real information, which makes sense in the long run I suppose.
posted by Zack_Replica at 12:25 PM on February 24, 2012 [5 favorites]


Captain!

The Pedantic Gauge is telling us that the title of the book means 20,000 leagues travelled over the face of the planet, under water. Not to a depth of 111,120km.
posted by clvrmnky at 1:43 PM on February 24, 2012 [4 favorites]


I do find it odd that they've not dived there again, especially since there were no photos taken. Weird.
posted by Thorzdad at 1:50 PM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Brilliant use of CSS.
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 3:51 PM on February 24, 2012


I've always liked this height chart for measuring ocean depths as after a certain point there's basically nothing that'll measure up. The BBC's pic is really good though I suspect a cover-up of the real information, which makes sense in the long run I suppose.
posted by Zack_Replica at 12:25 PM on February 24 [2 favorites +] [!]


This made me jump
posted by FirstMateKate at 4:26 PM on February 24, 2012 [3 favorites]


Even though no person has been down there again, there have been two ROVs that's followed the Trieste. I was pleasantly surprised to find there are actually a few videos online from the dive by the Nereus ROV.
posted by ymgve at 7:17 PM on February 24, 2012


FirstMateKate - in your heart, you know it's true.
posted by Zack_Replica at 10:50 PM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


I've always liked this height chart for measuring ocean depths as after a certain point there's basically nothing that'll measure up. The BBC's pic is really good though I suspect a cover-up of the real information, which makes sense in the long run I suppose.

Came here to post that myself. Then noted that Zack_Replica didn't point out the creepypasta joke in the—

This made me jump

—Dammit.

Maybe we should make a chart of how far down the MeFi thread you have to go before certain classes of jokes start to appear.
posted by spitefulcrow at 10:23 AM on February 25, 2012


This guy is a bit of a wimp, compared to this guy.
posted by a non e mouse at 2:12 PM on February 25, 2012


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