The Titanic cost $7.5 million to build, was designed to carry up to 3,547 people, measured just over 882 feet long and was designed to carry 64 lifeboats. The ship hit an iceberg just before midnight on April 14, 1912 and sank in the early hours of April 15.Continue Reading
Of the 2,223 people aboard the Titanic on the maiden voyage, only 31.6 percent of them survived. The ship took more than two hours to sink, and it is likely that more people would have survived if the intended 64 lifeboats had been aboard. Instead, the ship only had 20 installed.
The lifeboats that were aboard were also underused. Each lifeboat could hold up to 65 people, but the first one was launched prematurely, with only 28 people aboard.
The Titanic sits on the ocean floor at a depth of 12,600 feet. In 1985, explorer Robert Ballard found the wreckage using underwater robots in a covert operation in conjunction with the U.S. Navy. Ballard returned to the ship in 2004 with more sophisticated equipment and helped the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration analyze the Titanic's condition.
Documentaries were produced about both missions, although the U.S. Navy connection wasn't revealed until 2008. In April of 2012, the Titanic was named a UNESCO underwater cultural heritage site.Learn more about Geography