- by cnn
- 01 Oct 2023
An associate university professor in Florida has completed his research mission and set a new world record in the process: living 100 days beneath the ocean's surface.
On Friday morning, Dr. Joseph Dituri felt the sun's rays for the first time since retreating to a subaquatic compound 22 feet below the waters of Key Largo, Florida, on March 1.
Dituri, 55, a biomedical engineer who teaches at the University of South Florida and calls himself "Dr. Deep Sea," spent just over three months at the bottom of the Emerald Lagoon in Jules' Undersea Lodge, the only underwater hotel in the United States, according to the hotel's website.
The research project, Project Neptune 100, was organized by the Key Largo-based Marine Resources Development Foundation and focused on ocean conservation research and studying how compression affects the human body, according to Dituri's website.
The US Navy veteran said he's already noticed one impact: The water pressure seems to have shrunken his stature by half an inch. Dituri stood at 6 feet 1 inch tall before starting his mission, the University of South Florida stated in a news release.
The scientist began the project with a hypothesis that increased pressure could help humans live longer and prevent aging-related diseases, the news release said. Dituri said he hopes his underwater research will benefit the treatment of a variety of illnesses, including traumatic brain injuries, according to the release.
Dituri also used the project as an educational experience for youth.
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