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Access exclusive live video from up to 500m underwater

AP is the only news agency working with scientists on a research mission to unlock the secrets of the Indian Ocean

Working with top international scientists from the UK-led Nekton Mission team, AP will explore depths of up to 500 meters (1,600 feet) off the coast of the Seychelles in two-person submarines.

Their goal is to map a vast stretch of sea down to depths of 3000 metres to discover what impact rising water temperatures are having on marine life and to generate critical data to support the Seychelles’ commitment to protect 30% of their national waters.

The submarines and a remotely operated underwater vehicle are equipped with a series of underwater and surface cameras and will use cutting-edge technology to broadcast live video from an estimated 60 dives across 50 days.

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Explore the Deep Ocean

“Harnessing the latest live streaming technologies enables us to broadcast in real time from deep down in the Indian Ocean, transporting viewers to a vast hidden expanse of sea that mankind has never previously explored.”

Sandy MacIntyre,
AP Vice President and Director of Key Initiatives for News

Access stunning multiformat coverage

Engage your digital and broadcast audiences with comprehensive text, video and photo content, including scientific analysis and expert opinion on the pioneering research and why it matters.

Daily coverage will include live video of the search for submerged mountain ranges and previously undiscovered marine life, a behind-the-scenes look at life on board and interviews with world-class researchers.

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Enrich your coverage with exclusive interviews

AP will facilitate live two-way interviews with the scientists and AP journalists on board the expedition vessel and as they operate in the two mini submarines.

Additionally, AP offers availability for broadcast crews to join the vessel for limited periods during the final three weeks of the mission.

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Mission Overview

First Descent is a series of expeditions in a bold bid to accelerate the scientific exploration and conservation of the Indian Ocean, the world’s least explored and least protected ocean.

The mission begins in the Seychelles and continues with other expeditions across the Indian Ocean, concluding with the State of the Indian Ocean Summit in 2022 in Oxford.

Mission timeline

The scientific programme planned is varied and to an extent weather dependent. Please note therefore that the following mission timeline is subject to change.

Phase 1

The diving vessel Ocean Zephyr is the command centre for the mission. It departed from Bremerhaven, Germany on 26 January and is currently sailing to the Seychelles. AP provided onboard coverage and interviews with the mission director as the specially commissioned ship was readied for its voyage of discovery.

Phase 2

(26 February to 3 March 2019)
Final preparations are made aboard Ocean Zephyr in Victoria Harbour, Seychelles, as it begins its expedition to map the huge expanse of water that two billion people living in coastal nations on the Indian Ocean rim depend on for survival.

Phase 3

(3 March to 19 April 2019)
Daily coverage will include the search for previously unseen marine life and the hunt for underwater forests and submerged mountain ranges off the Seychelles, as the specially equipped submarines and a remotely operated vehicle begin their work.

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