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a strong steel deep-sea diving sphere, lowered by cable
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a strong, usually steel, sphere-shaped chamber with equipment for underwater observation; it is lowered on a cable from a surface vessel. There is equipment in the bathysphere for air regeneration, measurement devices, and a telephone; there are also several observation windows.

The first descent in a bathysphere was made by the Italian Balzamello in the Mediterranean in 1892, to a depth of 165 m. In 1911 the American engineer H. Hartman descended in a bathysphere in the Mediterranean to a depth of 458 m. In 1934 the Americans W. Beebe and O. Barton descended in the bathysphere Age of Progress to a depth of 923 m near Bermuda, and in 1948, after a series of improvements, O. Barton descended in a bathysphere near California to a depth of 1,360 m. Since the 1950’s hydrostats have been used instead of bathyspheres for oceanographic exploration (and in some cases, for work connected with the raising of sunken vessels).


Diomidov, M. N., and A. N. Dmitriev. Pokorenie glubin, 2nd ed. Leningrad, 1964.
Diomidov, M. N., and A. N. Dmitriev. Podvodnye apparaty. Leningrad, 1966.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


(naval architecture)
A spherical chamber in which persons are lowered for observation and study of ocean depths.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.