First Full-Sized Scans of Titanic Reveal Shipwreck in Unprecedented Detail

The first full-sized digital scans of the Titanic have revealed the world’s most famous shipwreck in unprecedented detail.

The RMS Titanic struck an iceberg on its maiden voyage and sunk to the bottom of the Northern Atlantic Ocean in April 1912, killing more than 1,500 passengers and crew.

Now, experts have captured the entire ship on the seafloor in astonishing detail by creating a digital scan of the wreck from hundreds of thousands of photos.

The first full-sized digital scan of the Titanic, which lies 12,500ft down in the Atlantic Ocean and 350 nautical miles off the coast of Newfoundland, Canada, was created using deep-sea mapping.

The images were taken by deep-sea mapping company Magellan Ltd during an expedition in the summer of 2022 and will be the basis of a documentary by Atlantic Productions.

The team spent more than 200 hours surveying and capturing the wreck using submersibles, taking 700,000 images of digital images of every angle of the ship and stitching them together to create a 3D reconstruction of the wreck.

The images, which were published by the BBC, offer a unique 3D view of the entire ship, enabling it to be seen as if the water has been drained away.

Questions About The Historic Shipwreck

While numerous crews have explored the wreck since it was located, only small sections of the ship have been visible at any one time. The new images could offer fresh forensic evidence about how the sinking of the Titanic unraveled.

“There are still questions, basic questions, that need to be answered about the ship,” Titanic analyst Parks Stephenson tells BBC Radio 4.

“[The model is] one of the first major steps to driving the Titanic story towards evidence-based research — and not speculation.

“I’ve seen enough in my years of studying the Titanic that I am suspicious of the narrative that we’ve become accustomed to over the past century.”

Stephenson says he questions whether the Titanic hit the iceberg along the starboard side as widely speculated.

“I’m seeing a growing amount of evidence in recent years that suggests Titanic actually grounded, ran over a submerged shelf of the iceberg, which was the first scenario proposed back in April 1912,” he says.

“There is still much to learn from the wreck, which is essentially the last surviving eyewitness to the disaster. She has stories to tell.”

Image credits: All photos by Altantic Productions/Magellan.