Pay particular attention to what Lori and Dr. Cullimore say in the body of the article, not the article's headline. Titanic's hull will be around longer than any of us. The superstructure -- which makes the wreck recognisable as the ship it once was -- maybe not so. For detail, please read my report on marconigraph.com.
The stern of the wreck, from what I read on your report Parks seems to me will be in worse shape than the bow. The stern's superstructure is in pieces to begin with, the recent decks collapsing. By 2028, most of the stern will be rubble- completely unrecognizable to what is presently shown. I suspect for the stern the main mast will, if it already hasn't, collapse, and what is overhanging on the port side will slide off. It's easy to tell how it will collapse by looking at it's current shape.
The deckhouses, promenade decks, davits, telemotor and such that are found on the bow section of the wreck have always been highly recognisable, giving us the illusion that Titanic was still a ship, reposing in state on the ocean floor. The stern has never fostered such an illusion...with its torn decks, demolished structures and paucity of recognisable landmarks, it has always appeared to be what it is...half of a severed shipwreck.
Even so, I would wager that the rudder will stand tall under the overhanging counter stern for as long as the stem of the bow section remains standing upright. Even with much of the shell plating torn away, the actual structure of the hull in the stern section will remain relatively intact for many years to come, albeit in a more advanced state of corrosion as the hull structure in the more intact (and therefore protected) bow section.
The decay of the stern section is a preview of what will happen to the superstructure of the bow section. The rate of decay observed on the stern section got its head start from the trauma that the stern section suffered during the break-up and descent to the ocean floor. As the upper decks give way, expect that fittings like the remains of the mainmast and electric crane will be lost. Likewise, look for the overall height of the bow section to decrease as the upper decks of the superstructure collapse in on themselves.
In 2028, I think that an ROV could still visit the Turkish Bath (assuming that the way is not blocked by collapsing debris) and find it in much the same shape as we found it this year. I think also in that same year that the only photo opportunties that tourists will have will be against the ground tackle on the foredeck. If tourist dives will still be running, that is...I wouldn't be surprised to learn (if I'm still around) that by 2028, the Titanic wreck will have become unattractive to both tourists and TV people.
>>Pay particular attention to what Lori and Dr. Cullimore say in the body of the article, not the article's headline.<<
Quite. If you read the headline alone, you might get the impression that there will be nothing there but a patch of iron oxide come 2028. However when actually read the article itself, you get a very different and far more accurate picture of the reality when you listen to what Dr's Cullimore and Johnston have to say.
The headline is very misleading but sensational whereas the article tells the whole of a mundane and realistically unsurprising story.
Guess which version the popular media is going to run away with!
I am mid-way through the analysis of the decay on the bow section of Titanic and have been looking at the changes in particular sections within the bow over time. I am very concerned about several areas on the bow that have gotten alarmingly worse since we last visited in 2003.
The officer's quarters, especially on the port side, are sagging very noticeably and bulging in several places. If this section falls then the marconi room will be severely compromised. The plating on top of the marconi room is very thin and starting to show significant rust pits or holes in this plating. The starboard hull gash where at least 4 decks are exposed to open sea is another area of concern. This gash is widening and small cracks and fissures within the outer portions of this area is extending forward. Several of these cracks were not observed two years ago so I know that this is an area for dynamic change. Finally, the aft section of the bow section is sagging much more than 2003 and many of the items in this area are sliding down towards the boilers.
By the way, Paul, thank you for bringing this article to our attention. You have to take what is written by the press with a grain of salt. Hopefully Lori and Roy will put their observations out in a reputable journal that will negate the spin factor. As for me, I am very interested in knowing what they have found from their metal strip data.
If you get a copy of James Camerons 2005 expedition to the ship...I have a recording of the original telecast...you can see the footage that was taken of the Turkish Baths. You should be able to order it from The Discovery Channel.
It's worth pointing out that the DVD was pulled from sale, as it was not the intended final version of the show. Currently it remains unavailable from the Discovery online store; indeed, as a UK resident who does not have satellite TV, I've yet to see a single image from the 2005 JC expedition! This has left me nuts with frustration, so I do hope that the final version of the DVD becomes available soon..?
From what Parks said there will be alot of new stuff not aired in the tv broadcast. Which is cool as I have the re-edited Discovery Channel version when it re-aired and the premire split in two version when the other new documentary first shown on how Titanic was born. Two tapes.
Hi all i was at the first meeting of the Titanic Heritage Trust last night in Coventry, which may i say as far as i was concerned was a good evening. At the end of the talk by one of the guest speakers he was asked by one of the general public how long Titanic had left, i was suprised when he replied twenty years! I thought or perhaps i was hoping she had longer left, what is the general opinion on this or is his estimate about right, thank you.
Liam, I'm not quite sure what you're driving at with that one. We'll know about any changes in the Titanic's condition as soon as they're observed. As to when there will be anything to observe, you're guess is as good as mine.
Looking at the construction photos of the ship, it's my understand that the decks are held up by pillars and the thicker hull plates keeps the decks aligned.
As there isn't much hull left attached to the stern decks, only internal structures like the uptake boxes keep these pillars aligned. And since there must be more circulation of sea water through the torn away stern section that the relatively intact bow section, the corrosion factors on the upright pillars must be close to what the mast at the bow is exposed to.
If this line of reasoning is correct, I would not be surprised for some expedition in the not too distant future to report that there isn't an upright structure there any more, but just a stack of former decks where it once stood.
As there is a lot of controversy about 'salvage' and 'grave robbing' and 'exploiting' swirling around this shipwreck, can someone please explain to me why artifacts that might still in the stern section should be left there to be covered over by these collapsing decks? The only argument that I can see for that is "Well, if we all kill ourselves on this planet, the props and other bronze pieces will allow some alien archeologists to 'prove' that intelligent life once existed on Earth."
Obviously, I am not buying into the argument that ‘the site is sacred because a lot of people died.’ Battlefields of our own Civil War are now national monuments and the death tolls there were horrific. Kids play on the cannons, people have picnics, find and pocket bullets off of the battle fields, so why is this ship different? Why should things remain forever on the sea floor instead of in museums and exhibits?
After the superstructure at the stern collapses, as it inevitably will, everything inside of it will be beyond this generations technological ability to recover.
Just a thought from one who doesn't understand why stuff should be left there forever.
>>can someone please explain to me why artifacts that might still in the stern section should be left there to be covered over by these collapsing decks?<<
Very simply because it's too dangerous to go in that part of the ship, even with an ROV. There's also the small matter of the fact that RMSTI...the lawful salvor-in-possession...is legally barred from recovering anything from the hull of the ship. The debris field is fair game, the ship herself is not. Since you cannot ignore the order of a judge without ultimately answering to one, don't expect anyone to be scavenging around inside any time soon.
I won't argue the matter of whether or not it makes sense.
I will add something to Michael's comment. I have been in the courtroom numerous times when Judge Clarke presided, and since with Judge Smith. RMST, while I was in the courtroom, has been told that the court will hear requests for recovery from the bow, but must be specific with those requests. Judges Clarke and Smith prohibited a "surgical incision" that was advertised several years ago, because RMST could not detail the operation, nor could they identify what targets they were after. Judge Clarke said it best... that he would not sanction a "carte blanche" approval to recover from the bow. Judge Smith added that if RMST wanted to bring a detailed request AT ANY TIME to the court, the Judges (at that time, there were the two) would hear the requests.
So, RMST has an invitation to make such a request to recover from the bow at any time. They CHOOSE not to.
The statements above are paraphrased, not direct quotes. I do have the transcripts from those hearings if anyone would like the EXACT words of the Judges.