September 14, 2017 06:15 GMT by dailymail.co.uk

Paul Allen reconstructs how doomed battleship sank

Paul Allen reconstructs how doomed battleship sank

Deep sea explorers used a drone in order to beam back stunning images of the USS Indianapolis, a naval gunship that lies three miles beneath the surface of the Philippine Sea.

Deep sea explorers used a drone which was sent to the ocean floor in order to beam back stunning images of the USS Indianapolis, a naval gunship that lies three miles beneath the surface of the Philippine Sea, in a dramatic live broadcast on Wednesday.

Last month, researchers found the wreckage of the Indianapolis, which was sunk by a Japanese torpedo in the final days of World War Two, more than 18,000 feet below the surface of the Pacific Ocean, the Navy said.

Paul Allen, the billionaire co-founder of Microsoft, sent an expedition toward the bottom of the sea to map out what remains of the Indianapolis.

Allen’s research vessel, the Petrel, managed to take high-definition images of the ship and correspond those images with photos of the Indianapolis as it was intact over seven decades ago.

Deep sea explorers used a drone which was sent to the ocean floor in order to beam back stunning images of the USS Indianapolis

Deep sea explorers used a drone which was sent to the ocean floor in order to beam back stunning images of the USS Indianapolis

The USS Indianapolis is a naval gunship that lies three miles beneath the surface of the Philippine Sea after it was sunk by a Japanese torpedo during World War II

The USS Indianapolis is a naval gunship that lies three miles beneath the surface of the Philippine Sea after it was sunk by a Japanese torpedo during World War II

The 'victory tally' is seen above. It was meant to symbolize the number of Japanese ships and aircraft that were downed

The 'victory tally' is seen above. It was meant to symbolize the number of Japanese ships and aircraft that were downed

The Petrel beamed back stunning pictures of what it discovered in a live broadcast that was simulcast on both PBS and Paul Allen's web site. 

The scientists were able to discover that 20 feet of the Indianapolis was buried in the mud at the bottom of the ocean between Guam and the Philippines.

Portions of the warship remain preserved, including part of the forward deck.

The researchers operating the drone use remote control to get the lay of the land from the bow to the stern of the ship.

The image of the Indianapolis is seen with the use of sonar, which enables researchers to map out the debris field

The image of the Indianapolis is seen with the use of sonar, which enables researchers to map out the debris field

The image shows that the ship remains largely intact thanks to the depth of its location, the lack of oxygen, and the cold temperatures

The image shows that the ship remains largely intact thanks to the depth of its location, the lack of oxygen, and the cold temperatures

The USS Indianapolis was a ship that was built for its plethora of guns. The crew was also able to glimpse the 5-inch AFT gun, which fired a 50-pound shell about seven miles

The USS Indianapolis was a ship that was built for its plethora of guns. The crew was also able to glimpse the 5-inch AFT gun, which fired a 50-pound shell about seven miles

The expedition was also able to get an up-close look at a .40m anti-aircraft Starboard gun

The expedition was also able to get an up-close look at a .40m anti-aircraft Starboard gun

The shells that are still locked and loaded into the gun are visible

The shells that are still locked and loaded into the gun are visible

The stunning images also showed the debris field surrounding the Indianapolis. The above image shows part of an aircraft

The stunning images also showed the debris field surrounding the Indianapolis. The above image shows part of an aircraft

The aircraft hangar, where the ship stored the scout planes that were used for reconnaissance, is seen in the above image

The aircraft hangar, where the ship stored the scout planes that were used for reconnaissance, is seen in the above image

When the expedition first caught a glimpse of the number '35' as seen above, it was confirmation that the vessel was the Indianapolis

When the expedition first caught a glimpse of the number '35' as seen above, it was confirmation that the vessel was the Indianapolis

The U.S. Navy and Paul Allen's expedition team have agreed to keep the exact location of the vessel confidential

The U.S. Navy and Paul Allen's expedition team have agreed to keep the exact location of the vessel confidential

The USS Indianapolis is now effectively an underwater grave and a war memorial to the lives lost

The USS Indianapolis is now effectively an underwater grave and a war memorial to the lives lost

Through sonar, scientists are able to map out the debris field at the bottom of the sea – just over three miles from the surface of the water.

The map of the field enables scientists to determine the direction (west) and the speed (17 knots) at which the ship was moving.

The debris field includes a bridge and a number of guns that came off the warship as it sank.

The findings enable experts to piece together exactly what happened to the ship in its final moments.

Another image beamed back from the drone shows the barbette, the gun emplacement used by a warship.

The barbettes hold up guns that are 250 tons in weight and are held in by gravity. The length of the barrel is 36 feet and the shell that it shoots is 350 pounds.

The shells are launched at a distance of 18 nautical miles.

Because the ship capsized, two of the three guns on board fell out, but somehow one of the guns stayed in place.

The researchers note that there is damage to the barbette which they believe was caused by the torpedo that hit between 40 and 50 feet below the area.

The scientists were able to discover that 20 feet of the Indianapolis was buried in the mud at the bottom of the ocean between Guam and the Philippines

The scientists were able to discover that 20 feet of the Indianapolis was buried in the mud at the bottom of the ocean between Guam and the Philippines

Portions of the warship remain preserved, including part of the forward deck. The researchers operating the drone use remote control to get the lay of the land from the bow to the stern of the ship

Portions of the warship remain preserved, including part of the forward deck. The researchers operating the drone use remote control to get the lay of the land from the bow to the stern of the ship

The image near the barbette shows a doorway that leads into the cabin of the captain of the Indianapolis, Charles Butler McVay III

The image near the barbette shows a doorway that leads into the cabin of the captain of the Indianapolis, Charles Butler McVay III

Another image beamed back from the drone shows the barbette, the gun emplacement used by a warship

Another image beamed back from the drone shows the barbette, the gun emplacement used by a warship

The above image shows the hull of the ship, which is largely intact though the signs of damage caused by one of the torpedoes are apparent

The above image shows the hull of the ship, which is largely intact though the signs of damage caused by one of the torpedoes are apparent

The researchers also find the remnants of two SC-1 SeaHawk scout planes - which were used largely for reconnaissance - that were held in the ship's aircraft hangar

The researchers also find the remnants of two SC-1 SeaHawk scout planes - which were used largely for reconnaissance - that were held in the ship's aircraft hangar

The USS Indianapolis cruiser was returning from its mission to deliver components for the atomic bomb that would soon be dropped on the Japanese city of Hiroshima when it was fired upon in the North Pacific Ocean by a Japanese submarine on July 30, 1945

The USS Indianapolis cruiser was returning from its mission to deliver components for the atomic bomb that would soon be dropped on the Japanese city of Hiroshima when it was fired upon in the North Pacific Ocean by a Japanese submarine on July 30, 1945

The image near the barbette shows a doorway that leads into the cabin of the captain of the Indianapolis, Charles Butler McVay III.

The researchers are also able to conclude that two torpedoes hit the ship, one of them striking an area near a chamber with crew members that likely would have died immediately upon impact.

They calculate the damage caused by the torpedo given the weight of its warhead (1,200 pounds), the speed at which it traveled (48 knots), and the range (between six and seven kilometers).

The researchers also find the remnants of two SC-1 SeaHawk scout planes - which were used largely for reconnaissance - that were held in the ship's aircraft hangar. 

A piece of one of the wings is seen on the ocean floor with the clear insignia of the U.S. Navy. 

The lack of oxygen that deep in the ocean and the extremely cold temperatures have allowed researchers to positively identify objects that have largely been preserved, including the fusilage of one of the aircraft. 

One of the aircrafts' panels is also clearly visible, as is a first aid kit used by pilots.

Allen said that the discovery was a humbling experience and a means of honoring sailors he saw as playing a vital role in ending World War Two

Allen said that the discovery was a humbling experience and a means of honoring sailors he saw as playing a vital role in ending World War Two

Another object that survived largely intact was the crane used by the warship to lift planes back aboard.

The expedition was also able to get an up-close look at a .40m anti-aircraft Starboard gun. The shells that are still locked and loaded into the gun are still visible.

The crew was also able to glimpse the 5-inch AFT gun, which fired a 50-pound shell about seven miles.

There were also the 40-millimeter quad guns on the stern of the ship.

The U.S. Navy and Allen's expedition have kept the exact location of the ship, which is essentially an underwater grave and war memorial, a secret. 

The USS Indianapolis cruiser was returning from its mission to deliver components for the atomic bomb that would soon be dropped on the Japanese city of Hiroshima when it was fired upon in the North Pacific Ocean by a Japanese submarine on July 30, 1945.

USS Indianapolis

Commissioned: November 15, 1932

Class: Portland-class cruiser

Wartime Complement: Up to 1,269

Awards: Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with ten battle stars; American Defense Service Medal; World War II Victory Medal

Fate: Sunk on July 30, 1945 by Japanese submarine 

It sunk in 12 minutes, according to the Naval History and Heritage Command in Washington.

No distress signal was sent. About 800 of the 1,196 crew members aboard survived the sinking, but only 316 were rescued alive five days later, with the rest lost to exposure, dehydration, drowning and sharks.

After a Navy historian unearthed new information in 2016 about the warship’s last movements that pointed to a new search area, a team of civilian researchers led by Allen spent months searching in a 600-square-mile patch of ocean.

With a vessel rigged with equipment that can reach some of the deepest ocean floors, members of Allen’s team found the wreckage somewhere in the Philippine Sea.

The statement said the Navy had asked Allen to keep the precise location confidential.

Allen said that the discovery was a humbling experience and a means of honoring sailors he saw as playing a vital role in ending World War Two.

‘While our search for the rest of the wreckage will continue, I hope everyone connected to this historic ship will feel some measure of closure at this discovery so long in coming,’ he said. 

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