Saturday, July 30, 2011

New Images of HMS Investigator

Parks Canada recently concluded its new mission this year to photograph and gather information about the Franklin search ship HMS Investigator in the icy waters of Mercy Bay. There doesn't seem to have been any big press release or fanfare, but a number of images such as the one here have quietly made their appearance on the PC website. The quality of these images, when compared with those taken by the remote camera last summer, is remarkable; one can see every nail in the copper sheathing, and it's apparent that the roman numerals were not painted upon this surface, but were cut out of sheet metal and nailed on. There's nothing, at least yet, of the 3D laser telemetry they had planned to gather, nor -- alas -- any images of the interior of the captain's cabin which, the initial announcement implied, might be photographed if it proved possible to insert a camera through a nearby hole in the ship's planking. But I'm sure what we can see is just the tip of the iceberg of the images they've made.

For those who enjoy the immediacy of an audio report, you can get a series of podcasts on their site which give weekly updates on the dives and the progress of their research; I haven't yet had time to listen to all of these myself, but they've provided some interesting evidence which William Battersby discusses on his blog, and if other have listened and found items of interest, I'd certainly be glad to hear about them.