A manned Chinese submersible broke through the 7,000-metre mark for a new national record on Sunday, state media said, as the rising Asian nation showed off its technological might.
The “Jiaolong” craft dived 7,015 metres (23,015 feet) in the Mariana Trench in the western Pacific Ocean on its fourth dive since arriving in the area earlier this month, the official Xinhua news agency said. The dive came on the same day as China was attempting its first manual space docking, a complex manoeuvre that will bring the country a step closer to building a space station.
“This (dive) shows the performance of the submersible is stable,” mission chief commander Liu Feng told state television in a live broadcast from aboard the ship supporting the submersible. ”The level of our technical personnel is getting better and better.”
The Jiaolong — named after a dragon from Chinese mythology — carried three people into the Mariana Trench, the deepest place in the world.