OceanGate cofounder plans dive to Bahamas’ portal to hell

A year after the Titan submersible disaster, OceanGate co-founder Guillermo Söhnlein is preparing a new underwater expedition to explore Dean’s Blue Hole in the Bahamas.

Söhnlein, who departed from OceanGate in 2013, now leads Blue Marble Exploration. The company plans to deploy a manned submersible to the 663-foot-deep underwater sinkhole, often referred to as the “portal to hell” due to local superstitions.

Dean’s Blue Hole is one of the world’s deepest ocean sinkholes. The expedition will face challenges such as extreme pressure, near-complete darkness, and potential unforeseen currents.

“Dean’s Blue Hole remains virtually unexplored,” Blue Marble Exploration stated on its website. “This offers an opportunity to discover the hidden secrets of cave-dwelling species, geological climate history, and unique ecosystems.”

Located on Long Island in the Bahamas, Dean’s Blue Hole is surrounded by a spectacular powder-white sand beach.

Söhnlein told The Independent that the mission will utilize certified submersibles and involve only trained professionals, not tourists. This approach contrasts with the OceanGate trip last June, which ended in tragedy when the Titan submersible imploded during a dive to the Titanic wreck, killing all five aboard.

The Dean’s Blue Hole expedition team will include scientist Kenny Broad and former NASA astronaut Scott Parazynski. They aim to gather unprecedented findings about the sinkhole, which formed approximately 15,000 years ago, according to the New York Post.

Despite the risks, Söhnlein remains dedicated to underwater exploration. Following last year’s OceanGate disaster, he told Reuters, “Let’s figure out what went wrong, let’s learn lessons, and let’s get down there again. I think it’s important for humanity.”

The exact date for the Blue Marble expedition has not been announced.

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