Lost LunchFebruary 28, 2016
In 1968, Alvin flooded and sank to 5,000 ft. depth when its cradle and support cables snapped while it was being lowered into the water. All three crewmembers escaped unharmed, but one of them left a bologna sandwich in the cockpit, where it remained for the 10 months that the sub sat upright on the seafloor. Alvin and the preserved sandwich (inset) were recovered and brought back to Woods Hole in August 1969. The discovery that near-freezing temperatures and lack of oxygen aided preservation in the deep sea led to new areas of chemical and biological research. (Photo courtesy of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Archives)
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