On The Wreckage Of The Battleship Yamato Are Her Iconic 18 Inch Barrel Guns Still Intact And Can They Be Salvaged

On The Wreckage Of The Battleship Yamato Are Her Iconic 18 Inch Barrel Guns Still Intact And Can They Be Salvaged – TOKYO – Microsoft co-founder and philanthropist Paul Allen and his research team announced Wednesday that they have discovered the wreckage of a massive World War II Japanese warship in the Philippines near where it sank more than 70 years ago. The discovery of the Musashi, one of the largest warships in history, comes as the world celebrates the 70th anniversary of the end of the war. Allen and his team on the superyacht M/Y Octopus found the ship on Sunday, more than eight years after the search began, Allen said in a press release on his website. “From a young age, I was fascinated by World War II history, inspired by my father’s service in the U.S. Army,” Allen said. “Musashi is an engineering marvel and as an engineer at heart, I have a deep appreciation for technology and the effort that goes into it.”

According to Allen’s research team, detailed images captured by a high-definition camera attached to an underwater probe confirmed Musashi’s remains. Allen said video and pictures still show a valve wheel with Japanese characters reading “main valve handle” used in the engineering area below, a catapult system used to launch aircraft, a large gun turret and one of two on the ship. 15 ton anchor. He said the team also found the bow of the ship.

On The Wreckage Of The Battleship Yamato Are Her Iconic 18 Inch Barrel Guns Still Intact And Can They Be Salvaged

Japanese experts said they want to study the images to try to confirm the ship’s identity. Kazushige Todaka, head of a private museum specializing in the battleship Yamato, the Musashi’s sister ship, said the details of the painting matched the Musashi, the only sunken battleship in the region. “Judging by the location, it must be Musashi,” Todaka told public broadcaster NHK.

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According to Paul Allen’s research team, Musashi carried six to seven floatplanes from this catapult system. Aircraft are Mitsubishi F1M2 or Aichi E13A.paulallen.com

Musashi, commissioned in 1942, sank in the Sibuyan Sea during the Battle of Leyte Gulf in October 1944 with the loss of nearly half of the ship’s 2,400 crew. The ship was repeatedly hit by torpedoes and bombs from allied aircraft carriers. The naval battle, considered the largest of World War II, crippled the Imperial Navy, cut off Japan’s oil supply and allowed the United States to attack the Japanese-occupied Philippines.

Here’s what Microsoft billionaire Paul Allen used to find a sunken WWII warship: http://t.co/Z8wkCOZoBE pic.twitter.com/vzKwxLgR1U— Ice Marine (@IceMarineInc) March 4, 2015 High-tech equipment, including the underwater “Goat Mountain”, and years of research led to the discovery of the World War II Musashi in the Pacific Ocean.

WATCH: Footage from an unmanned submarine shows the wreckage of a World War II warship. Video courtesy of: Paul G. Allen

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Update: Paul Allen passed away on October 15, 2018. The son of the founder of Microsoft and a World War II veteran, Allen supported a research team that spent years searching for shipwrecks associated with the war. His views on the U.S.S. Indianapolis and the U.S.S. Lexington. David Mearns, a marine scientist who worked with Allen, shared today in an email to National Geographic: “Paul’s interest in marine and shipwreck research is deeply personal, growing in part from his father’s service during World War II. But passion and curiosity. this, he invites the world to join this exciting quest through the computers he has created. Groundbreaking discoveries and explanations of naval history ensure that the sacrifices of those who served will never be forgotten.”

After years of detailed historical research and terrain analysis of the seabed, it was the underwater “mountain goat” that finally found the wreck of one of the most impressive warships in history, the Musashi.

The researchers, led by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, used Allen’s motor yacht M.Y. Octopus, announced that on March 2, 2015, it found an Imperial Japanese Navy warship in Philippine waters at a depth of about 3,280 feet (one kilometer). Japanese naval historian Kazushige Todaka confirmed her identification.

Musashi and Yamato at 73,000 tons (66,224 metric tons) are the world’s largest warships known to date. Musashi was sunk by Allied forces on October 24, 1944 during the Battle of Leyte Gulf, considered the largest naval battle of World War II and possibly the largest naval battle in history. About half of the 2,399 Musashi members were killed.

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The search area for the crash began more than 11 years ago with an analysis of primary sources, which indicated four different locations in the Sibuyan Sea: the “official” location of Japan and the US Navy, recorded in the logbook as a rescue stop for the crews. the Japanese traveler Musashi; , and pictures of Japanese survivors of the war show where the ship sank off Sibuyan Island.

By adding that account to dozens of other navigational clues, the team was able to identify a search area of ​​360 square nautical miles (477 square miles or 1,236 square kilometers), according to David Mearns of Bluewater Recoveries, who assisted. Explore and define your final search area.

Side-scan sonar, which can detect features or objects rising from the seabed, is commonly used to locate potential shipwrecks. A sonar sensor is usually towed behind a research vessel at a constant depth, but initial efforts were hampered by a long fishing line that entangled the sensor.

Allen’s team then switched to the multibeam echosounder (MBES), which revealed the bathymetry of the search area and could potentially identify sonar targets. (See how scientists map water depth.)

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Large volcanic mountains dominate the study area, causing the depth to vary between 500 feet (150 m) and 6,560 feet (2,000 m) or less. This made both MBES and traditional side-scan sonar impractical, so Allen’s team turned to the next technological solution: an autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV), which requires no tethers and can conduct consistent sonar surveys over large, deep areas without rules. .can land

“Your basic AUV usually works in the oil and gas sector, like the Gulf of Mexico. It’s usually flat terrain with a few hills, but nothing crazy,” explained Will O’Halloran Robotics, head of marine operations at Bluefin, the company that worked on it. . with the search team and designed and built AUV to specifications and monitoring its performance.

But the extreme topography is also an advantage in the search, explained O’Halloran, who was not on the AUV survey but communicated with the team. Allen’s team was able to focus on specific areas to deploy the AUV by excluding the higher elevations from the steeper bottom slopes and focusing more on the “hole” area of ​​the base.

“It’s only natural that there are things that won’t be at the top,” he said. “A 73,000 ton ship has to slip, right?”

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However, to ensure that nothing is missed, the autonomous vehicle is programmed to sweep the sonar sensors on the seabed from top to bottom and back again. “[This SUV] is like a mountain goat,” joked O’Halloran. “It’s stubborn and determined.”

On average, each AUV dive lasts 24 hours and covers a maximum depth of 150 square miles (388 square kilometers), after which the vehicle returns to the Octopus. There, sonar data is downloaded and analyzed for anomalies that could indicate the presence of a shipwreck. A remotely operated vehicle, the Octo ROV, then investigates the promising anomaly with a high-definition camera.

The Octo ROV only made three AUV dives to find the target, which was later confirmed to be the Musashi wreck. Since then, Allen has tweeted photos and videos of the Musashi captured by the Octo ROV, including shots of the massive 36-by-20-foot (11-by-6-meter) main rudder.

While this may seem like a quick success, O’Halloran emphasized the research team’s years of effort to speed up the search field.

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“[Allen’s team] has a strong, continuous research process that will know where to start looking, and you can see the results, how quickly they hit the mark,” he said.

The Bluefin 12D AUV used to find Musashi is the same Bluefin AUV used to search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, which disappeared in March 2014. (Learn more about the tools used to search for Flight 370.)

Me. Octopus has been the launch vessel for several scientific research projects, including the 2012 National Geographic Dipsea Challenge expedition, in which James Cameron performed a record-breaking solo dive into the Mariana Trench. (Explore the DEEPSEA Challenge expedition.)

In a statement, Allen, the son of a World War II veteran, said the discovery not only helps fill important gaps in our understanding of the Leyte Gulf War, but also brings closure to the families lost in the war. war

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Former crew member Musashi, who recognized the ship from photos and videos

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