Once, in 1960, for 20 minutes, blah blah blah

Tomorrow at the U.S. Naval Museum in Washington, DC, the Navy will honor Dr. Don Walsh. He copiloted the Trieste in its journey to the Marianas Trench fifty years ago.

Dr. Walsh is a retired Navy captain, author of 200 published articles on marine science, and has lectured in 50 countries. Those presenting the Navy Distinguished Public Service Award (the highest civilian award in the Navy) include the Oceanographer of the Navy, the Chief of Naval Research, the Director of the Naval Historical Center, and the Explorer-in-Residence (!) of the National Geographic Society.

No word on whether any of the attendees are secret Dopers who will snicker during any of the speeches.

Dr. Walsh: Yes, I see a question?

Audience Member: How many times did you go down?

Dr. Walsh: Just once. So…yes, another question?

Other Audience Member: And for how long?

Dr. Walsh: About 20 minutes. As you can see on…oh, yes. Another question?
Third Audience Member**: When was this?
Dr. Walsh**: 1960. Back then…
First Audience Member**: How many times again?

Well, if I could be there, I certainly would. I remember very clearly reading a book on that trip. I think it included some others as well, but my memory-fu is not giving me any more data. In any case, I was enthralled by the account of that trip.

Aside: I;m just wondering whether I missed something about the snicker thing…probably whooshed over my head, no disrespect intended there, just asking why?

The relavent thread and also this.

You said that Dr. Don Walsh was one of the people aboard the Triestse when it made its historic dive in 1960. Just how deeply did it descend?

And for how long?

Oh, I know. I’m just not telling.

And how many times has it been to the deepest part of the ocean?

Thank you, I see now. Sorta. :slight_smile:


Some highlights of the story:

To summarize, they went to the bottom of the Marianas Trench. Once. In 1960. For 20 minutes.

I remember as a little kid seeing the pictures of the “submarine” as it looked to me. It looked pretty roomy. Then I found out as an adult that they spent the whole time cramped inside that tiny ball at the bottom.

And this thread should be dedicated to** Legion** who started the initial thread. May his/ her memory linger.

I remember Dr Walsh from his articles in Proceedings magazine, BTW The Triestse still exists and is in a museum.

They talked about it on NPR today…


Oh cool. I missed the whole thing by not being born yet, and I’d never seen the sub. I always imagined it looked like the alvin. The trieste is huge by comparison.

But all alvin had to carry was three chimpmunks.


Just in case you dont know this…

That LARGE part of the “ship” is basically the underwater version of a balloon. Not terribly strong and filled with something slightly less dense than water (diesel fuel?).

The bouyancy of THAT is what keeps the tiny little sphere at the bottom (which holds the people) from sinking like a rock (and never coming back up).