July 6, 2022 08:20

Deep-sea mining robot stranded on ocean floor

Deep-sea mining vessel.
Image: Global Sea Mineral Resources.

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Trial goes wrong as mining robot detaches at depth of more than 4km.

A mining robot has become detached from its control ship at a depth of 4km and is now stranded on the Pacific Ocean floor, reports Reuters.

Belgian company, Global Sea Mineral Resources (GSR) has been testing Patania II, a 25-tonne mining robot prototype in the mining concession Clarion Clipperton Zone since 20th April.

“On its final dive in the GSR area, a lifting point separated and Patania II now stands on the seafloor,” a GSR spokesman said in an emailed statement.

“An operation to reconnect the lifting point begins this evening and we will provide an update in due course.”

Dr Sandra Schoettner, deep-sea biologist at Greenpeace, said: “Losing control of a 25-tonne mining machine at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean should sink the idea of ever mining the deep sea.”

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