"Captain Nemo in 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne is who I always wanted to be. Absolutely no doubt about it. I always had this dream of being inside his ship, the Nautilus."
Like many young readers before him, Robert Ballard dreamed of becoming an undersea explorer after reading of Jules Verne's 20,0000 Leagues Under the Sea. Unlike most of Verne's readers, Ballard went on to realize his dream.
For more than ten years, Ballard spent four months of every year at sea, and much of that time miles of feet below the water's surface, exploring the uncharted mountain ranges of the ocean floor. While his discoveries of undersea volcanoes and chemosynthetic life in the hydrothermal vents off the Galápagos islands have earned him a place in the history of science, his expeditions to discover the wrecks of such famous lost ships as the Titanic, the Lusitania and the Bismarck also earned him a place in the headlines.
His discoveries, and the amazing vehicles he has built to perform his explorations, are even more remarkable than the fanciful adventures of Jules Verne's Captain Nemo.