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Ohio businessman plans to go 35,000 feet underwater on historic dive to ocean's deepest point


Larry Connor and the team will complete their dives in the state-of-the-art full ocean depth submersible DSV  Limiting Factor.

CINCINNATI – With only nine months left until he pilots a history making mission to space, real estate investor and philanthropist Larry Connor has another groundbreaking piece of exploration to take care of. He is scheduled to make two dives to the deepest part of the ocean at more than 35,000 feet.

Connor said he plans to explore both the Challenger Deep and the Sirena Deep in the Mariana Trench, located in the Pacific Ocean near Guam, he told the Cincinnati Enquirer, part of the USA TODAY Network.

The “hadal zone,” or the area of the ocean below 20,000 feet, is considered the last frontier of exploration on Earth. “Hadal exploration” is exploration at depths beneath 20,000 feet, or 6,000 meters. 

The focus is groundbreaking scientific research that will take Connor – with the help of companies EYOS Expeditions and Caladan Oceanic – to depths of 35,856 feet and 35,150 feet respectively, using the Hadal Exploration System, the world’s only deep exploration facility.

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The two dives are tentatively scheduled for April 15 and April 17, but they are weather-condition dependent. So, they could dive earlier or later, Connor said.

Larry Connor.

From ocean depths to the ISS

Only two other people have traveled to the bottom of the Sirena Deep – Alan Jamieson and Victor Vescovo. 

Connor, the founder and CEO of The Connor Group, a real estate investment firm based in Dayton, Ohio, said Patrick Lahey will pilot the mission. Lahey, CEO and owner of Triton Submarines, has completed more than 10,000 dives and is considered the world’s most experienced submersible pilot.


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