The world ocean covers most of the surface of the planet and plays a huge role in the existence of all the alive organisms on it. It influences the ecosystem of the Earth and systemizes its functioning. However, it is commonly believed that people researched only five percent of its territories. This idea firstly was highlighted by the early explorers and later became a widescale inaccuracy of the oceanographic exploration awareness which was also mentioned in the Immerse Presents Ocean Exploration (2009) scientific materials. Nowadays it is one of the popular misconceptions that needs to be revealed.

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The problem of misunderstanding the basic facts about the world ocean among non-specialists in this area has been a problem for a long time period. Different scientists have already investigated this topic. For example, according to Feller, R. (2007) there were 110 misconceptions about the ocean existence. He included to this list various misleading hypothesis among which one can find ideas that the Bermuda Triangle is an unsafe place, all icebergs are made of salt water, it rains less in the ocean than on the land and many others. But the wider problem is that the ocean is more explored than many people imagine.

The fact that people have discovered only five percent of the ocean happens to be old enough to become outdated. People have been interested in diving to the new depths for decades, and ocean exploration has become a compound challenge for many scientists. The true history of new oceanography discovers began when in 1960 Don Walsh and Jacques Piccard used a bathyscaphe for diving to the mark of 10,800 meters in the deepest point of the Challenger Deep. At that moment the percentage of the researched areas in the ocean started growing.

Here rises the idea that the hypothesis about the impossibility of modern scientists to explore most parts of the ocean is false. According to the research of Young, G. (2014) the ocean has many similar underwater areas which do not vary too much from each other. It means that the only interest for researching is to get deeper into the remote territories where exists a chance to open new unknown species living there, to analyze the composition of water and to gather rare bioactive material. The modern exploration tools give an opportunity to get to the vast amount of the underwater places, but it does not seem to bring any controversial or surprising results, that is why the scientists do not put much attention to it. The priority in oceanography goes to researching the lowest accessible points of the world ocean.

Speaking about the exploration of the deepest places on Earth it is common to mention the expeditions into the Mariana Trench as they certainly belong to the most extreme scientific researches. A significant contribution to this topic was done by a well-known movie director James Cameron. In the year 2012, he made a large impact on the debunking of the myth that people had learned only five percent of the ocean. Cameron alone reached the bottom of the Challenger Deep (the deepest part of the Mariana Trench) as official data of the expedition informs the readers. He did it together with all the technical equipment, including video cameras on the special submersible vessel, designed for deep diving and high water pressure.

As the NOAA review by Raineault, N. Flanders, J. and Bowman, A. and other authors (2018) explains, people get deeper and deeper into the oceanographic exploration every year, investigating the nature with special vehicles and research vessels, such as The E/V Nautilus, NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer and R/V Falkor. For example, in the year 2017 expeditions were working with the seafloor, exploring its vast diversity of sceneries. E/V Nautilus made 98 dives in and worked on the innovation and educational processes in the Pacific Ocean. This vehicle is used to add new zones to the explored territories of the world ocean.

With more completed oceanographic exploration, the less common misconceptions about the oceans stay unrevealed. Media often plays a critical role in the highlighting of misleading facts and that is why people should always check the credibility of the sources which they refer to. Researchers continue working in the direction of informing casual readers about all the myths and fabrication that were of common believes in the past centuries. People can get acquainted with the scientific views on the problems of oceanographic explorations and first change their own general awareness about the main issues of underwater life. It will be the starting point for the correctives in the whole modern society.

The topic of ocean exploration still stays debatable in the scientific world because such researches need a substantial amount of investments. The sums go to tens and hundreds of billions of dollars when the words are about organizing successful missions to the ocean floor. As annual reports say, these missions are still made to explore new sides of the unknown water areas. Every year researchers summarize the already available knowledge and get new discoveries. The idea that people reached the five percent opened territory and stopped at that point looks ridiculous because it mismatches the reality. Explorers have already visited and researched thousands of square kilometers of the oceans. And taking that into the consideration together with the fact that humans even used technologies to dive into the deepest part of the ocean, into the Marianna Trench, it becomes obvious that if scientists needed, they could send expeditions to many other underwater places. The reason why they do not do it fast is because they try to find places that are of great interest to the human civilization and will not have the same appearance and composition as all the other world ocean’s territories. Anyway, it does not cancel the fact that humans have already overpassed the number of five percent in oceanographic explorations.

    References
  • Andersson, A. and Mackenzie, F. (2012). Revisiting four scientific debates in ocean acidification research. Biogeosciences, 9(3), pp.893-905.
  • Dziak, Bob & Haxel, J & Matsumoto, Haru & Lau, Tai-Kwan & Heimlich, Sara & Nieukirk, Sharon & Mellinger, David & Osse, James & Meinig, Christian & Delich, Nicholas & Stalin, S. (2017). Ambient Sound at Challenger Deep, Mariana Trench. Oceanography. 30.
  • Feller, R. (2007). 110 Misconceptions About the Ocean. Oceanography, 20(4), pp.170-173.
  • Immersion Presents Ocean Exploration. (2009). Mystic, Connecticut: Sea Research Foundation, Inc.
  • Raineault, N. Flanders, J. and Bowman, A., eds (2018). New frontiers in ocean exploration: The E/V Nautilus, NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer, and R/V Falkor 2017 field season. Oceanography 31(1), supplement, 126 pp.
  • Young, G. (2014). Missiles & Misconceptions: Why We Know More About the Dark Side of the Moon than the Depths of the Ocean. Bachelor. Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
  • Andersson, A. and Mackenzie, F. (2012). Revisiting four scientific debates in ocean acidification research. Biogeosciences, 9(3), pp.893-905.
  • Dziak, Bob & Haxel, J & Matsumoto, Haru & Lau, Tai-Kwan & Heimlich, Sara & Nieukirk, Sharon & Mellinger, David & Osse, James & Meinig, Christian & Delich, Nicholas & Stalin, S. (2017). Ambient Sound at Challenger Deep, Mariana Trench. Oceanography. 30.
  • Feller, R. (2007). 110 Misconceptions About the Ocean. Oceanography, 20(4), pp.170-173.
  • Immersion Presents Ocean Exploration. (2009). Mystic, Connecticut: Sea Research Foundation, Inc.
  • Raineault, N. Flanders, J. and Bowman, A., eds (2018). New frontiers in ocean exploration: The E/V Nautilus, NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer, and R/V Falkor 2017 field season. Oceanography 31(1), supplement, 126 pp.
  • Young, G. (2014). Missiles & Misconceptions: Why We Know More About the Dark Side of the Moon than the Depths of the Ocean. Bachelor. Massachusetts Institute of Technology.