CAPE HATTERAS, N.C. — Researchers studying the remains of the nation's first ironclad ship, the Monitor, said Saturday that early tests show far more corrosion than originally thought, which could be a factor in whether the ship is raised from its ocean grave and placed in a museum.
Nearly two dozen scientists aboard a Navy ship 220 feet above the Union warship are using sophisticated monitoring devices to determine if the wreckage can be retrieved from the Atlantic, where it sank in a storm 125 years ago.
But Dane Konop, spokesman for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, emphasized that the $1.8-million expedition's mission is only to gather data on how best to preserve the ship.
Deep Drone Camera
"We're not here to bring up the Monitor. We're here to bring up information," Konop said.
Researchers using the unmanned camera Deep Drone--the same roving-and-retrieving apparatus that found debris from the space shuttle Challenger after it exploded--said the corrosion is much worse than expected.