MOSCOW, July 3 (RIA Novosti) - Submersibles involved in research in Siberia's Lake Baikal have conducted their longest dive yet in the world's deepest lake to study a mud volcano, a local preservation fund spokesman said on Friday.
The Mir-1 and Mir-2 mini-subs, which performed 52 dives last summer, spent 10 and 12 hours at a depth of some 1,400 meters on Wednesday.
"These were the longest dives into Baikal... the longest dives there usually last eight or nine hours," the spokesman said.
Researchers resumed work in June to monitor the lake in its southern parts, near Cape Tolsty. The expedition will then proceed to the north, with plans to conduct research in the lake's central part in July and in northern Baikal in August.
The researchers will begin fish research in the Olkhon Gate strait on Friday, where "there is a very interesting environment, in terms of fish and their behavior."
Research earlier this week found evidence that most of Lake Baikal is much younger than the widely accepted age of 25 million years.
"Baikal as we can see it now, its shoreline, is about 6000-8000 years old, while the lake's deep-water area is about 150,000 years old," a researcher told RIA Novosti.