Canadian researcher Henrietta Mann who has been studying the bacteria that is allegedly eating up the sunken hull of the Titanic for four years said that in less than 30 years, there may be nothing left of the famous cruise ship except a heap of “rusticles”. In 1991, there was a scientific expedition to the famous wreck 12,400 feet underwater and it revealed a formation of rust that seemed to look like icicles or stalactites hanging from the ship.
Apparently this is what happens when iron oxidizes. When the specimens were scrutinized under an electronic microscope, Mann discovered that it wasn’t a chemical process of oxidization that was happening but that the formations were the work of bacteria. Among the dozens of bacteria that was identified from the specimens, she found one that was never seen before and named it Halomonas Titanicae in reference to the ship.
That particular bacterium is invisible to the naked eye and measures in at 1.6 micrometers in length. Mann also revealed that with 50,000 tons of steel, the bacteria present were having a feast and everything except peculiarly brass would be eaten. She said that over the years, more and more species of bacteria have been attracted to the sponge like “rusticles” which created a symbiotic colony and the more the bacteria multiply, the rate at which the Titanic disintegrates into a pile of rush quickens.
Although the loss of the iconic ship would mean a loss of a heritage, the silver lining that Mann has summed up is that this discovery would mean that all of the old ships, oil rigs and cargo that fall to the bottom of the sea will not pile up like garbage since bacteria will eventually dispose of it all.