Australia Completes 3D Survey of WWII Japanese Submarine & More Trending News


WWII submarine sunk off Australia
Divers have been capable of map the wreck web site utilizing specialised digital camera (Northern Territory Government)

Dec 2, 2022 8:09 PM by

The Maritime Executive

Australia accomplished its first 3D survey of a wreck in deep waters off the coast close to Darwin. It is hoped that the distinctive challenge which took three years to finish will present essential new particulars a couple of WWII-era Japanese submarine sunk by the Australians and also will present data for the preservation of the location which is acknowledged as a conflict grave by each the Australians and the Japanese.

It was January 1942, throughout some of the darkest days of World War II. The Japanese submarine I-124, which had been constructed within the Nineteen Twenties, was deployed off the northwest coast of Australia laying underwater mines. The submarine was half of an Imperial Japanese Navy squadron that had been waging covert operations in opposition to Australia’s north, laying mines in waters close to Darwin in a bid to intercept allied vessels and shut the port.

The Australian Navy responded to an unsuccessful assault on a U.S. oil tanker within the area by one of the Japanese submarines by sending three corvettes to the scene. The I-124 fired a torpedo on the first ship to reach, the HMAS Deloraine, which in flip detonated dozens of depth chargers in a sustained assault that sank the Japanese submarine. All 80 crew members died on board, with the vessel sinking between Darwin and Bathurst Island. Only weeks after the I-124 was sunk, 236 folks have been killed within the bombing of Darwin.



Eight many years after the corvettes deployed by the Royal Australian Navy sunk the Japanese Navy submarine I-124 on January 20, 1942, a crew of researchers accomplished a 3D survey utilizing specialised cameras mounted to underwater scooters. According to Northern Territory senior heritage officer and maritime archaeologist Dr. David Steinberg, a distant location, sturdy rides, murky waters, and depth all introduced hurdles that had prevented them from beforehand finishing surveys of the location.

The archeological mapping marks the first-time divers have descended 50 meters (164 ft) on the Beagle Gulf, northwest of Darwin in a bid to seize a deeper understanding of the vessel to tell future analysis and web site administration. Previous surveys have been restricted to distant sensing which supplies worthwhile knowledge however was restricted compared to diving to the location.

The submarine was the primary wreck in Australia to be protected underneath the Commonwealth Historic Shipwrecks Act 1976 which has since been changed by the Underwater Cultural Heritage Act 2018. Access to the location by the general public is by allow solely. In 2018, former Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe visited Darwin, and earlier this 12 months a plaque bearing the names of the 80 submariners was unveiled at Darwin’s Dripstone Cliffs as half of the measures to protect the historic significance of the battle each to the Australian and Japanese folks.

“By sending experts down to the wreck, we give ourselves the best chance to get the most accurate picture of what happened 80 years ago, and the condition of the wreck today,” stated Chansey Paech, the Northern Territory Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage. 

He added that the expedition is essential in understanding the position that the Northern Territory performed within the protection of Australia throughout WWII, and can assist inform the way it protects and maintains the necessary historic web site. They additionally hope so as to add to the understanding of the submarine and modifications made by the Japanese throughout World War II. While it was one of 4 vessels in a category constructed to put mines, three have been destroyed throughout the conflict.

According to David Steinberg who led a crew of archaeologists, technical divers, a filmmaker, and a cultural liaison officer on the expedition aboard Paspaley Pearls’ analysis vessel Marilynne, the 3D survey was capable of seize correct particulars on the state of the submarine and the encircling space. He stated it might present a baseline for future research.

The crew was additionally capable of perceive how shortly the location is deteriorating, and whether or not there are methods to protect the conflict grave. “The degree of accuracy and element that is been captured is simply outstanding with these new applied sciences and new advances in maritime shipwreck mapping,” Steinberg informed News Corp Australia.

“The wreckage of the I-124 submarine is an iconic reminder of our history and this expedition will hopefully provide new information about how we can care for this site,” stated Tanya Plibersek, Commonwealth Minister for the Environment and Water.

Findings of the survey have been shared with the Japanese authorities and a container of sand from the seabed was to be shared with the households of the crew. Plans name for a documentary revealing the findings from the survey to be launched subsequent 12 months on the anniversary of the bombing.


Australia Completes 3D Survey of WWII Japanese Submarine

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Australia Completes 3D Survey of WWII Japanese Submarine

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Australia Completes 3D Survey of WWII Japanese Submarine

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