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Secrets of the Deep Sea

Natural History Collections[28.05.2004] On Wednesday 2 June 2004 Bergen Museum opens the exhibition Secrets of the Deep Sea at the Natural History Collections. The exhibition have a dual function. It represents portions of what is known about life in the deep sea at the same time as it also also addresses ongoing research.  The exhibition is linked to the MAR-ECO project which launches its main cruise on 5 June 2004.

About 70 % of the surface of the earth, and as much as 90 % of the biosphere, are oceans. But we still know astonishingly little about the life at great depths. Over the last 150 years several expeditions have been launched with the purpose to map these unknown areas of our planet. The city of Bergen and the solid marine science communities based there have played a vital role in a number of these investigations.

New technology and new scientific knowledge

Technological innovations of the past decades provide science with a lot of new information about life in the deep sea. Phenomena may be studied near at hand, and images and films give science a whole new foundation to base its knowledge on, compared to what was previously possible. In addition, new research methods, like gene technology and DNA studies, are of vital importance to modern scientific studies. The exhibition, which in part is retrospect, is also intended to be a show window into ongoing deep sea research. Live recordings from recent expeditions form an integral part of the exhibition and provide an extra dimension to the displayed objects.

Previous and ongoing research

The exhibition Secrets of the Deep Sea takes its departure in the significant investigations of the North Atlantic on board the research vessel Michael Sars in 1910, and connects this expedition to previous and later explorations of the deep sea. The unique finds from the Michael Sars Expedition make up one of today’s most valuable scientific collections at Bergen Museum.

In 2004, Bergen Museum once again is the place of meeting of a large Atlantic cruise. The research vessel G.O. Sars sets sail from Bergen, Norway, on Saturday 5 June 2004 for a two-month long cruise, during which state-of-the-art equipment will be used to bring to light new knowledge about the life at the depths along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Bergen Museum will also this time be the main collecting centre for the material gathered at the cruise.  Contributions to the exhibition come from the marine science communities at the University of Bergen and Bergen Museum. In addition to this, significant contributions have been made by the Institute of Marine Research in Bergen, Norway and collaborating international research units.

The exhibition is linked to the MAR-ECO project. The University of Bergen and the Institute of Marine Research coordinates the international project which aims at a strengthening of knowledge of animal life along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge from Iceland to the Azores.

About the exhibition

Exhibition Producer: Bergen Museum, Public Outreach Section.
Secrets of the Deep Sea has been designed by exhibition architect Anne Aspen, Bergen Museum.

Contact information
Einar Ådland, Information Manager, tel.: +47 55 58 93 63
Morten Steffensen, Head of Public Outreach Section, tel.: +47 55 58 90 35/97018774,


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