Sir Richard Branson Takes on Ocean Exploration With Virgin Oceanic



Fresh from conquering transatlantic, domestic, and intergalactic travel, Sir Richard Branson has set his sights on the final frontier: the ocean floor. Over the next two years, Virgin Oceanic will field a newly designed deep sea sub that will take a lone pilot to the deepest locations in the earth’s five oceans. Amazingly, only one of these points, the Mariana Trench, has been visited by a manned submersible before (Bathyscaphe Trieste, 1960.) The pilots will include Sir Richard Branson, who will dive to the bottom of the 8 kilometer deep Puerto Rico trench, which the Oceanic website notes “is also near to Branson’s home on Necker Island in the British Virgin Islands.” The first dive, to the Mariana Trench, is scheduled for late 2011.


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