[Proj] Slightly off-topic: The phantom island that is real

strebe at aol.com strebe at aol.com
Fri Nov 23 21:19:18 EST 2012

The crew of a research ship claims to have undiscovered a large island in the South Pacific’s Coral Sea near New Caledonia, called Sandy Island. The news feeds have picked up on this and it’s making its way around the geeksphere with great rapidity. Here is an example article:

However, it is quite clear from satellite imagery and multiple data sources that the “island” in fact exists, though possibly it is a barely submerged sandbar. Yet the crew claims depths there are around 1,400 meters.

Obviously the ship was not where they say it was. The question is, how did the crew of this research vessel convince themselves they were sailing in the same area? I don’t think a datum mismatch can account for this, given the size of the sandbar. 

I have started a thread here:

— daan Strebe

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