Great Lakes News

Great Lakes News

NOAA and Fourth Element Create 3D Great Lakes Shipwreck Models


Have you ever wanted to go scuba diving and explore the old nooks and crannies of an old shipwreck? Although the Great Lakes are rife with wreckage, chilly water for the majority of the year can be a bit intimidating for those who'd prefer to swim in more Caribbean waters. Fortunately for those of us who like to do our shipwreck research from within a pile of blankets on the couch, the U.S National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and Fourth Element, a diving company, have teamed up to create online 3D online renderings of seven shipwrecks in the Great Lakes.

NOAA researchers mapped each wreck, and Fourth Element provided the software to create the renderings. Each wreck was selected for a 3D rendering based on its history, state of preservation and accessibility.

Thunder Bay in Lake Huron, off the coast of Michigan, has been a hub of commercial activity for the past two centuries, making it a prime shipwreck destination. The Thunder Bay Wrecks website allows viewers to maneuver around seven wrecks in the area, ranging from wooden schooners to early steel-hulled steamers. Each wreck has its own webpage, which features the explorable wreck, photos and videos, the wreck’s history, a map of its location, and a short description of diving at the wreck.

To get diving, visit:

[Photo from NOAA’s National Ocean Service]

South Shore JUN17