Australia’s very first submarine was discovered after a 103- year search, the Royal Australian Navy revealed Thursday.
The HMAS AE1, a WWI-era submarine, disappeared onSept 14, 1914, with 35 team members on board off the coast of Rabaul, Papua NewGuinea The disappearance was among the nation’s most “persistent mysteries of Australia’s military history,” the navy specified.
The vessel was discovered in the Navy’s 13 th search objective and was discovered off the coast of the Duke of York Islands in Papua New Guinea today, the Navy stated.
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“This is one of the most significant discoveries in Australia’s naval maritime history,”Defense Minister Marise Payne informed the BBC.
“It was the first loss for the Royal Australian Navy and the first Allied submarine loss in World War I; a significant tragedy felt by our nation and our allies,”Payne stated.
The AE1 made last contact with an Australian ship at 2: 30 p.m. the day it vanished. Mystified villagers on a close-by island at the time mentioned seeing a “monster” or “devil fish” that appeared and rapidly vanished into the water.
An undersea drone was released about 131 feet above the sea bed and discovered the vessel in more than 984 feet listed below the surface area.
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TheAustralian federal government stated it would call the team member’s households to provide some closure. The team members aboard were from Australia, New Zealand and Britain.
“I truly believe this will bring peace of mind to the family and descendants of the crew who lost their lives on board and perhaps, in time, we may discover what caused the submarine to sink,”Payne stated.
The federal government likewise revealed it would deal with Papua New Guinea to “preserve the site.”
The vessel’s area was not revealed. Officials thought the vessel sank undamaged after most likely striking a reef that punched a hole in the pressure hull.
TheAssociated Press added to this report.