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Construction starts on deep sea research base

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East China’s port city of Qingdao, where the origin of Earth is being studied. Xinhua

XINHUA – Construction has started on a deep sea research centre in east China’s port city of Qingdao to explore frontier fields such as the origin of life on Earth.

The centre is established by the Pilot National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology (Qingdao).

It will pool domestic and foreign resources to carry out interdisciplinary research on the deep sea, including marine physics, chemistry, biology and geology, according to sources with the national laboratory.

The centre also plans to conduct research on frontier fields such as deep-sea dark energy, the evolution of deep sea life, as well as technologies for deep sea exploration and resource development.

In recent years, the pilot national laboratory in Qingdao has accelerated the pace of exploring the deep sea with the development of a 10,000 metre underwater glider and submersible targets.

It is also developing unmanned mobile observation platforms such as all-sea-depth autonomous underwater robots to provide support for deep sea research.

“Our knowledge of the deep sea is still very limited. Many mysteries remain unsolved such as the impact of the deep sea on the global climate and how organisms survive in the light-free and oxygen-free deep sea environment,” said Hu Dunxin, an academician with the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

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