Tag: antikythera wreck

Antikythera Mechanism ~ World’s oldest computer is more ancient than first thought

Excerpt from dailymail.co.ukThis is according to Argentinian scientists who found eclipse calendarThe calender included a solar eclipse that happened on May 12, 205 BC Previous radiocarbon dating analysis of had dates mechanism to 100 BCThe study&...

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New Treasures Recovered From The ‘Titanic Of The Ancient World’

antikythera spear
Chief diver Philip Short inspects the bronze spear recovered from the Antikythera shipwreck.

Excerpt from

Since sponge divers discovered it in 1900, the ancient Antikythera shipwreck -- a massive Greek vessel that sank more than 2,000 years ago in the Aegean Sea -- has captivated archaeologists. Located 180 feet below the surface near the island of Antikythera, the wreck has given up all manner of treasures over the years, including bronze and marble statues and the so-called Antikythera Mechanism, a strange clocklike device brought up in 1901 that some call the world’s oldest "computer."

The Antikythera Mechanism
Now, an international team of divers and archaeologists, using a cutting-edge metal suit known as the "Exosuit," say they’ve discovered that the wreck is much bigger and even more impressive than anyone realized.

...Brendan Foley, a Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution archaeologist who participated in the recent excavation effort, said in a written statement. "It's the Titanic of the ancient world."

In addition to giving the new assessment of the ship's size, the team brought up several new artifacts including tableware and an enormous bronze spear, pictured below, that’s believed to have been part of a giant statue. 

The finds indicate that much of the ship’s cargo is still preserved beneath the sediment, according to the statement. 

The vessel is believed to have been carrying tons of treasure from Asia Minor when it went down some time between 70 and 60 B.C.

antikytheraGreek diver Alexandros Sotiriou discovers a "lagynos" ceramic table jug and a bronze rigging ring on the Antikythera shipwreck.

exosuitDiver Edward O'Brien "spacewalks" in a jointed metal suit known as the Exosuit, which is designed to allow divers to plunge comfortably to depths of 1,000 feet.

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Exosuit Gets Wet in Quest for Buried Shipwreck Treasure

livescience.com A team of underwater archaeologists who are searching for the buried treasures of an ancient shipwreck in Greece finally got their high-tech "Exosuit" wet. Antikythera mechanismDivers are revisiting the famed Antikythera wreck th...

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Modern technology to hunt for ancient technology ~ Robot “Exosuit” to aid in Antikythera mechanism exploration project

Robot Exosuit


Archeologists have been trying to recover ancient artifacts from the bottom of the Aegean Sea since sponge divers first found the more than 2,000-year-old shipwreck off the Greek island Antikythera in 1900. To date, they have recovered fragments of bronze statues, marble sculptures, gold jewelry and the Antikythera mechanism, a clock-like astronomical calculator that has been dubbed the world’s oldest computer. Jacques Cousteau and his team found a number of artifacts as well as human remains when they explored the area in the 1950s and 1970s.

However, no previous expedition had the Exosuit, a one-of-a-kind diving robot exoskeleton that weighs 530 lbs, and is capable of submerging to the depth of 1,000 feet and divers can remain underwater for hours without any risk of decompression sickness.

More on the Antikythera mission

“It’s likely that sediment will hold the kind of stuff we can’t even imagine,” Brendan Foley, a maritime archaeologist from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute and co-director of the project, said during an interview earlier this summer when the team was researching bioluminescent organisms off the coast of Rhode Island. “Our eyes light up thinking about it. It’s the kind of thing that wakes you up in the middle of the night. These are artifacts that have never been seen since the time of Caesar.”

The Antikythera wreck settled more than 200 feet below the surface around the 1st century B.C., but some of the cargo found dates to the 4th century B.C. Historians have suggested the boat may have been carrying loot from Greece to Rome around the time of Julius Caesar.

The Exosuit enables more thorough exploration

The robot exoskeleton Exosuit enables an archaeologist to much more effectively unearth artifacts that might tell more about the ship’s story. During an earlier expedition back in 2012, Foley and his colleagues used sonar to locate targets at the wreck site that could be huge statues, according to WHOI’s Oceanus magazine.

The team is also looking to research a second wreck nearby that could have been the Antikythera ship’s traveling companion. They are also planning to take a look at the bottom of an undersea cliff —  around 400 feet deep — given additional artifacts from the wreck may have slipped over the edge of the cliff over time.

Nuytco Research manufactures the Exosuit, which includes has four 1.6-horsepower thrusters that move the suit up, down, forward, backward, right or left. Exosuit wearers do not have to worry about decompression sickness because the suit maintains surface air pressure. This adds an additional level of safety, as a diver can be pulled up to the surface in just a couple of minutes if there’s a problem.

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