Loss of the Titan Submarine and Crew: Insights from Dr. William J. Parker III.
In this episode of the Cats & Cosby Show, hosted by John Catsimatidis and Rita Cosby on 77WABCradio, the tragic loss of the submarine Titan and its crew at sea was discussed. Dr. William J. Parker III, who is a retired Navy veteran with over 30 years of experience, shared his expertise and insights regarding the incident. This blog post delves into the key points made during the conversation between Dr. Parker and the hosts.
The Depths of the Ocean
The discussion commenced with John Catsimatidis and Rita Cosby seeking insights from Dr. Parker about the challenging conditions of the ocean’s depths, particularly the immense pressure experienced by submarines at great depths. Dr. Parker explained that the pressure in the ocean increases with depth, approximately one atmosphere for every 33 feet. The submarine Titan was lost at a depth of 12,500 feet, equivalent to the pressure of having ten school buses on every square inch of its structure.
The hosts inquired about the possibility of a submarine imploding due to pressure. Dr. Parker clarified that submarines, including the Titan, are designed to withstand the pressure at specific depths. However, submarines may become vulnerable if their structural integrity is compromised, such as damage to a bolt or a nut. Additionally, as submarines dive deeper, they may experience shape distortion, making them susceptible to failure.
The hosts questioned whether Titan could have suffered damage on its way down or upon reaching the ocean floor. Dr. Parker speculated that if Titan experienced a mechanical failure on its descent, it might have impacted the ocean floor directly, given its depth. The rapid descent likely resulted in a direct impact, possibly leading to a structural failure.
The Fate of the Crew
Dr. Parker emphasized that the crew on board the Titan, some of whom he knew personally, would have had a rapid descent to the ocean floor, which would have taken approximately four minutes. While the situation was undoubtedly tragic, the rapid descent may have spared the crew prolonged suffering.
Remembering the Crew
In a poignant moment, Dr. Parker acknowledged his personal connections with members of the crew. He also mentioned his colleague Stockton Rush, the CEO of the company responsible for the Titan submarine. These individuals were experienced and dedicated explorers, committed to advancing our understanding of the ocean’s depths.
The loss of the Titan submarine and its crew was a tragic event that underscores the challenges and risks associated with deep-sea exploration. In this interview Dr. William J. Parker III provided valuable insights into the incident, shedding light on the tremendous pressures submarines face in the ocean’s depths and the potential consequences of structural failures. As we reflect on this unfortunate event, we remember the crew’s contributions to scientific exploration and their commitment to pushing the boundaries of our knowledge about the deep sea.