By Ria Novosti
A manned Chinese submersible set a new record for the country’s deepest ever sea dive at over 7,000 meters (some 23,000 feet) on Sunday morning, Xinhua reported.
The Jiaolong submersible, named after a mythical sea dragon, dived 7,015 meters into the Mariana Trench in the western Pacific Ocean at around 11 a.m. local time.
The dive, the fourth since the submersible arrived in the area earlier this month, started at 7 a.m. on Sunday in heavy rain, the report said.
In July last year, the Jiaolong broke through the 5,188-meter mark in an ocean dive, and have since succeeded in reaching the depth of 6,671, 6,965 and 6,963 meters in its previous three dives earlier this month.
The four dives have proven that the submersible’s performance is “stable” and that the the crew’s skills are improving, mission chief commander Liu Feng was quoted as saying.
China has previously said its submersible program is aimed at scientific research and exploration of mineral resources on the deep seabed.