Raise the Titanic: Are you thinking I am talking about the Novel by Clive Cussler? If yes, then I am cutting your thinking by "NO". I am not talking about that novel.
If you are thinking I am talking about the ICT Entertainment adventurous movies of 1980, based on the same novel. Again I have the same answer "NO". I am not talking about the novel nor the movies based on it, but being a science and especially a chemistry student I am telling you about the scientific thoughts and ways of raising the Titanic. Before talking about its raising let me tell you something about Titanic first.
The Titanic, built-in 1912 as an unsinkable luxury ocean liner, sank on its maiden voyage after colliding with an iceberg. More than 1500 people died. Today, the Titanic lies 2 miles beneath the ocean's surface some 100 miles south of the Great Banks of Newfoundland, Canada.
There is considerable interest in raising the Titanic. Although there is no major scientific justification for raising the ship, it might have some commercial value because people are interested in seeing things of historical significance. However, the pressure at this depth is about 300atm, which is too extreme for underwater divers. But some scientists want the challenge of the advanced technological problems that such a feat presents. These scientists want to develop the technology to locate more important objects in the deep ocean. Scientists also want to expand the technology for deep-sea photography.
In the past, sunken ships have been raised by attaching inflatable buoys (big balloons) to them and filling the buoys with air. Compressors located on surface ships supply the air needed to inflate the buoys. (See in the picture below)
The picture above is taken from the book "General Chemistry" by 'J. Brown."
Unfortunately, commercial pumps are not available to pump air at a pressure of 300 to 350 atm over distances of 2 to 3 miles
However, there is another way to fill the buoys with gas other than pumping air into them. That is By substituting a direct current(DC) generator for the pump and a wire for the hose, the hydrogen ions present in the ocean (from the dissociation of ocean water) can be reduced to hydrogen gas at one electrode. This gas can be used to inflate the buoy.
Scientists have calculated that if it would take a 20-MW generator operating continuously for more than 3 years to produce enough hydrogen to raise the Titanic.
Header image source