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Second expedition to Antikythera seeks more mechanism remains

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Author Topic: Second expedition to Antikythera seeks more mechanism remains  (Read 290 times)
Thor, God of Thunder
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Posts: 1863

« on: September 03, 2015, 01:37:06 am »

Deep history

A weather-wracked expedition was conducted at the site last year. A revolutionary robotic diving suit only managed a few dives when the waves calmed enough.

Since then the sea floor has been carefully mapped to specifically target fresh items of interest.

“We were shocked to discover the wreck was much larger than earlier work had indicated — 30 to 50 metres long,” expedition leader Brendan Foley told the Archaeology Hour Podcast.

“The hull timbers were 11cm thick. This would make the wreck bigger than the pleasure barges Caligula built for his artificial lake and they were the largest Roman era ships known.”

Coins found on the site date the disaster to between 70BC and 67BC.

While any and all new discoveries will present a valuable window in to life BC, there is one thing they want to find above all else.

More fragments of the Antikythera mechanism.

“In its original state the metal components of the mechanism were thin sections of copper alloy,” Foley told the podcast. “After thousands of years on the sea bottom they would now have the consistency of Fimo craft clay — very fragile indeed.”

Some speculate, based on differences in fragments found, that there may actually have been two computational devices in the wreck. Called astrolabes, they were used to predict the motion of the planets and the dates of upcoming eclipses.
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