Have you ever wondered what it would be like to live underwater for 100 days? How would it affect your body and mind? How would you cope with the isolation, the pressure, and the lack of sunlight? Well, one man is about to find out.
Joseph Dituri, also known as Dr. Deep Sea, is a retired Navy commander, a University of South Florida professor, and an avid explorer of the ocean depths. He has embarked on an ambitious project called Neptune 100, which aims to break the Guinness World Record for the longest underwater habitation.
Dituri is staying in a 100-square-foot habitat called Jules’ Undersea Lodge, located 30 feet below the surface in a lagoon near Key Largo, Florida. He entered the habitat on March 1st and plans to stay there until June 8th.
But Dituri is not just doing this for fun or fame. He is also conducting a first-of-its-kind biology study on himself, to see how living underwater for such a long time affects his health and well-being.
He believes that living in a pressurized environment could have positive effects on his longevity and prevent aging-related diseases. He cites previous research that showed that cells exposed to increased pressure doubled within five days.
He also hopes that hyperbaric pressure could improve his cerebral blood flow and help treat traumatic brain injuries, which he has studied extensively as a biomedical engineer.
To test his hypotheses, Dituri will undergo various medical tests before, during, and after his underwater stay. These include blood panels, ultrasounds, electrocardiograms, stem cell tests, and psychological assessments. He will also monitor his diet, exercise routine, sleep quality, and cognitive performance.
Dituri will not be completely isolated from the outside world during his underwater odyssey. He will continue teaching his biomedical engineering class online , using an internet connection provided by an umbilical cord attached to his habitat. He will also communicate with his family and friends via video calls.
Moreover, Dituri will use this opportunity to inspire others to learn more about science and conservation. He will host live-streamed conversations with renowned marine scientists such as Sylvia Earle, who will visit him in his habitat. He will also interact with local schoolchildren who will come on field trips to see him through an acrylic window .
Dituri says he is motivated by his passion for exploration and discovery. He was inspired by James Cameron’s Deepsea Challenger mission to the bottom of the Mariana Trench in 2012, where he was part of the team that found an organism with potential therapeutic value for Alzheimer’s disease.
He hopes that by living underwater for 100 days, he can contribute to scientific knowledge and spark curiosity among others.
“I want people to understand that everything we need is on this planet,” he says. “We just need to find it.”