Filipino scientist becomes one of first humans to reach world’s 3rd deepest spot
Dr. Deo Florence Onda has become the first Filipino and one of the first two humans to reach the bottom of Emden Deep in the Philippine Trench, the third-deepest spot in the world.
Onda made history just before noon today, March 23, by descending into the lowest point of the spot at 10,045 meters (around 34,100 feet) deep.
Putting things into perspective, Emden Deep can have Mt. Everest, the highest peak on Earth standing at 8,849 meters tall, completely submerged. That is over 12 towers of Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world at 828 meters, stacked on top of one another.
Joselito Membrot, a member of the DSSV Pressure Drop crew, shared a clip on Facebook showing the crew’s celebration above water as Onda and renowned undersea explorer Victor Vescovo reach the bottom of Emden Deep.
touchdown @10045meters#emdendeep 🇵🇭🇺🇲
Posted by Joselito Dela Cruz Membrot on Monday, March 22, 2021
Onda, an oceanographer and associate professor at the University of the Philippines Marine Science Institute, made the record alongside Vescovo, who currently holds the record for the deepest manned descent by diving into Mariana Trench in 2019.
Onda and Vescovo began their descent into Emden Deep at around 6:30 a.m., as seen on Membrot’s updates on Facebook. The crew, headed by Capt. Stuart Buckle and which consists of several Filipinos, meanwhile, stayed aboard the DSSV Pressure Drop.
Their Emden Deep dive was operated by EYOS Expeditions and was sponsored by Caladan Oceanic, which is owned by Vescovo. The two ocean explorers descended aboard the deep-sea submersible DSV Limiting Factor, which can only be launched from the DSSV Pressure Drop.
06:30am starts going into the deep!🇵🇭
Prior to the dive, Onda noted on Facebook that the said expedition was “one leap for the country and the world,” and that the Filipinos “should be proud of this national heritage.”
“These crew have been touring the world and setting records with the DSV Limiting Factor in the past years. Many of us might have just heard it now, but the ship, sub, and crew have opened and paved the way for [modern-day] deepsea explorations,” he posted on March 20.
“With the ship are the Filipino crew who are contributing their skills and talents to make the voyages and dives safe and meaningful. They are the reasons why the aquanauts are able to accomplish their missions and tell tales of the deep seas,” Onda added.
An appreciation post for DSSV Pressure Drop Crew and Officers headed by Capt. Stuart Buckle operated by EYOS…
“I am equally proud and very happy to be making this voyage with my fellow Pinoys onboard. It felt like I have brought a home with me into this expedition. Thank you for looking after me, taking care of me, and for cheering me up [every day],” Onda said. /ra