Diving bell use

Diving bell use

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Credit: SHEILA TERRY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Diving bell use. Historical artwork of James Rennie's diving bell (centre left) being used to repair the collapsed Thames tunnel during its construction. The bell was made of cast iron and weighed nearly 2 tonnes. A leather air hose (orange) entered the top of the bell. Construction on the tunnel, which was designed by Sir Marc Isambard Brunel, began in 1825. This collapse, which flooded the tunnel, occurred in 1827. The boats surrounding the diving bell are carrying hazel branches and bags of clay to repair the tunnel roof. The tunnel was completed in 1873, after several more floods.

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