Dolphin 2, a historical Polish bathyscaphe, has been acquired by the National Marine Museum in Gdańsk, northern Poland. The vessel was bought from a private collector for around USD 25,000, much owing to the Ministry of Culture that contributed to the purchase.
This deep-sea laboratory was created in 1973. It was constructed by Antoni Dębski, a diver and ship mechanic. The vessel researched, among others, the depths of the Baltic Sea, the Atlantic Ocean and the coasts of Africa. Divers observed schools of fish and fishing equipment, in order to find out which kind is the most effective. Its twin, Dolphin 1, was used, among others, in movies.
“An amazing vehicle, pretty unique, there are no serially produced underwater vessels of this kind. It has a very long history; it was used for over half a century for Polish oceanographic research,” said Robert Domżał, the head of the National Marine Museum in Gdańsk.
The bathyscaphe lacked its own propulsion and was towed during operations. It used to be transported on the research ship “Profesor Siedlecki”. The vessel can be seen in this footage from 1988, showing its return to Gdynia following a cruise near Antarctica.