The Living Infinte
Trieste continued to support the U.S. Navy's deep sea missions after her voyage to Challenger Deep. Following several research dives in San Diego and repairs to the submersible's float in the early 1960s, Trieste was moved to Boston in 1963 to search for the lost nuclear submarine USS Thresher (SSN-593). Trieste eventually found Thresher's remains, including the submarine sail, at 8,400 feet below sea level. After her retirement, parts of Trieste were used to build Trieste II, which recovered pieces of Thresher's wreckage in 1964.
Project Nekton has stimulated decades of innovation and undersea study. The Navy's expertise in designing remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) and piloting submersibles can be traced back to Trieste's deep submergence capabilities. Today, the Naval History and Heritage Command's (NHHC) Underwater Archaeology Branch manages and interprets over 17,000 sunken military craft, carrying on a legacy of research and exploration.
Image: USN 1084706: Trieste II. A floating crane hoists the bathyscaph into the water in San Diego, California, during her commissioning ceremony, January 16, 1964. Trieste II operated as a test vehicle for the Navy's deep submergence program, qualifying four officers as 'hydronauts.' U.S. National Archives Photograph.