A shipwreck loaded with silver worth more than £130million has been discovered at the bottom of the Atlantic. Odyssey Marine Exploration has confirmed the identity and location of the shipwreck site of the SS Gairsoppa, nearly 4,700 meters below the surface of the North Atlantic, approximately 300 miles off the coast of Ireland in international waters.
The SS Gairsoppa was a 412-foot steel-hulled British cargo ship that was torpedoed by a German U-boat in February 1941.
The ship was carrying £600,000 worth silver, including over 3 million ounces of private silver bullion.
"We've accomplished the first phase of this project - the location and identification of the target shipwreck - and now we're hard at work planning for the recovery phase," said Andrew Craig, Odyssey Senior Project Manager.
Odyssey CEO Greg Stemm said: "We were fortunate to find the shipwreck sitting upright, with the holds open and easily accessible. This should enable us to unload cargo through the hatches as would happen with a floating ship alongside a cargo terminal."
Earlier, the Odyssey team conducted ROV (Remotely Operated Vehicle) operations from the RV Odyssey Explorer to inspect the site. The video and photographs acquired during the exploration of the shipwreck were reviewed and analyzed at length to confirm the identity of the shipwreck as that of the SS Gairsoppa.
The expedition and resulting data was also used to evaluate the condition of the shipwreck and to begin planning for recovery operations.