5,000-meter test dive of China's submersible postponed

13:32, July 23, 2011      

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Video grab shows the Chinese manned submersible Jiaolong on the mother-ship on the eastern Pacific Ocean on July 22, 2011. China postponed a 5,000-meter test dive of Jiaolong early Friday morning (Beijing Time) due to unfavorable sea conditions, according to the State Oceanic Administration (SOA). (Xinhua/Yu Xiaojie)

China postponed a 5,000-meter test dive of the manned submersible Jiaolong early Friday morning (Beijing Time) due to unfavorable sea conditions, according to the State Oceanic Administration (SOA).

Strong winds and high sea waves have forced the SOA to call off the test for the time being, said Liu Feng, the mission's commander-in-chief.

The submersible was scheduled plunge to a depth of 5,000 meters Friday morning.

"The weather condition worsened faster than we expected in the morning... In order to ensure safety and full preparations, we had to cancel the test," Liu said.

Waves up to 3 meters high are forecast in the coming days but conditions are expected to improve Monday, said Liu, adding that the SOA work team was still waiting for a suitable time for the dive, said Liu.

Jiaolong dived to a depth of 4,027 meters with three people aboard Thursday morning in an international area of the eastern Pacific Ocean.

According to the SOA, the submersible was found to have "a few malfunctions" upon resurfacing, but it's now in good condition after "all-out repair efforts."

The submersible completed 17 dives in the South China Sea between May 31 and July 18 last year, reaching 3,759 meters during its deepest dive.


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(Editor:黄蓓蓓)

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