Blue Lake Project

Martin Robson, one of PADI’s Technical Field Consultants for the Rebreather, CCR and Sidemount courses and a Designated Instructor Trainer for the Rebreather and CCR Launch programs is embarking on a truly incredible exploration of Blue Lake, Russia.

Blue Lake is a beautiful karst spring which is located in Kabardino-Balkaria in the Caucasian mountains in the South of Russia.

At 235m in length, 130m wide and 258 m deep Blue Lake is currently considered to be the third largest karst source in the world and second largest in Europe.

It’s sheer size is not the only reason to consider this lake a unique natural object. With the water temperature of approximately 9oC from the bottom to the surface it offers excellent conditions for the preservation of artifacts. The lake offers enormous potential for discovering a host of historically significant objects on the bottom. The Blue Lake has been an intersection of world history since the time of peoples’ migration from Africa to Europe and for thousands of years people have thrown things in to the lake expecting them to disappear forever.

It is difficult to imagine what discoveries await the inquisitive explorer of the lake, from the precious weapons of Tamerlane’s troops to Second World War Romanian army equipment, from the oldest evidence of human history to the trucks laden with Georgian port wine circa 1920 which has probably matured nicely over the years.

The amount of water which comes out of the lake is huge. The water carries up about 35 – 50 m3 of dissolved rocks every day. This proves the existence of a very deep and significant cave system in the lake. One of the project objectives is to locate, penetrate and explore this cave system it, aiming to prove the Blue lake is the deepest karst spring in the world to date.

Blue Lake Awareness Project includes:

• Research of the lake with ROV robots and a 3D-scanner.

• A series of scientific deep dives – to take samples of silt, rocks, water and temperature measurements.

• A series of deep dives (including a dive to the bottom 258m) with the aim of photographing historically significant artifacts and their recovery.

• A series of deep dives to locate the cave system and source of the spring leading to the exploration of the deepest underwater cave system in the world.

Blue Lake Awareness Project participants:

• Martin Robson, deep diver and cave explorer.

• Team of scientists from Perm Science Institute, headed by the rector of Perm Science Institute (Russia), Doctor of Geological and Mineralogical Sciences Nikolai Maksimovich.

• Italian geomorphologist, professor of Verona University, Giovanni Badino.

• A special detachment from the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations.

• Director of Research Center“Blue Lake”, the champion of Russia in deep diving Igor Galaida.

• Natalie Avseenko, twice world champion in free diving.

The project will make use of unique equipment from Perm University Russia and Verona University Italy specifically designed for exploration of underwater caves.

The results of the research will be published in the diving and scientific magazines all around the world as well as a book. The best photographs will be chosen to be a part of photo exhibition dedicated to the Blue Lake Awareness Project.

The book and exhibition will be presented at the Golden Dolphin Show in Moscow 16 – 19 February 2012.

The project is supported by:

• The Kabardino-Balkaria government

• Russian Ministry for Civil Defence, Emergencies and Elimination of Consequences of Natural Disasters(MOE)

• Russian Geographic Society

• National Geographic

• Nikon


• Fourth Element

• Analox

• Santi

• Imtech

• Ambient Pressure Diving To follow the progress of Martin’s dives during the Blue Lake project visit:

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