Titan sub's final fatal journey 'could have been captured on camera' as internet sleuths research doomed vessel

28 July 2023, 14:33

Internet sleuths have been researching the doomed vessel
Internet sleuths have been researching the doomed vessel. Picture: Alamy

By Emma Soteriou

The Titan sub's final journey could have been captured on camera as internet sleuths do a deep dive into what really happened with the doomed vessel.

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Five people died on the sub in June as they journeyed to see the Titanic's wreckage, including the company's CEO Stockton Rush.

The others on board were UK billionaire Hamish Harding, French explorer Paul Henry Nargeolet, Pakistani businessman Shahzada Dawood and his son, Suleman.

The sub catastrophically imploded after losing contact with the mothership, with debris being discovered days later.

But now internet sleuths believe they have identified the exact camera system used by the sub, and they say it could store similar information to an aircraft's black box - that would give vital clues as to the sub's final moments, and possibly even still have some imagery of its final descent.

Read more: Survivor of failed Titan trip recalls moment passengers had to 'rock from side to side' to get sub back to surface

Read more: DNA tests being carried out on human remains recovered from wreck of Titan submersible

Graphic explains how Titan submersible imploded

In an in-depth thread on Reddit, internet users said they believed the camera system would be "the closest thing to a black box".

One person, claiming to be a sub pilot, said: "In short subs don't have 'black boxes' but they do record data internally.

"However, this is not like an aircraft 'black box' designed for an emergency. The event that Titan experienced will have a significant impact on the data hardware. But what data does a sub record. The Titan appears to have had a SubC Rayfin.

"These are IP based cameras that can record in 4K internally while transmitting at a lower resolution to a screen. Its possible that camera survived.

"However, on our subs we generally save power while descending so the lights may have been off and the camera, even if it survived would not reveal much and go dead the moment the sub imploded... it may record internally but the power comes from the subs batteries."

They went on to say: "The best record will be the pilot checks that occur at set intervals. During these checks the pilot should give the subs Depth, Heading and information on life support.

"The surface officer will log communications usually on a check sheet. This is stored with the subs pre-dive checks that the pilot preformed."

Submersible lost on dive to Titanic suffered 'catastrophic implosion', say US Coast Guard

A second person commented: "While the camera optics were probably off at the time of the implosion, the system recorded telemetry that it used to program when the camera would turn on/off and to tag the resulting imagery."

They added: "Until recently, OceanGate was listed among the case studies. No longer."

The subsea camera believed to have been used was the Rayfin Benthic.

Former Royal Navy Officer would not have gone into the Titan

Someone else said: "The cameras were outside the pressure dome. At least one of them seems to have survived as you can see a glimpse of it in the wreckage. Its local storage may very well have glimpses of what happened.

"The control spheres were also outside the pressure dome and designed to handle the pressure. At least one of the videos there is an engineer stating they had onboard computers.

"They may also have a recording of various conditions of what was going on."

Following the incident, it emerged that safety concerns were raised multiple times before, with several people including Ross Kemp and YouTuber Mr Beast having dropped out of doing similar trips.

OceanGate suspended all exploration and commercial operations after the tragedy.