The Deep Ocean Mission is proposed as multi-ministerial multi-disciplinary programme with emphasis on development of deep-sea technology, exploration of deep-sea mineral resources and biodiversity, acquisition of a research vessel for exploration, deep sea observations, and capacity building. Ministry of Earth Sciences is the nodal agency for implementing the programme. The major objectives proposed under Deep Ocean Mission are as follows:
- Development of technologies for deep sea mining, underwater vehicles and underwater robotics;
- Development of ocean climate change advisory services;
- Technological innovations for exploration and conservation of deep-sea biodiversity;
- Deep ocean survey and exploration;
- Proof of concept studies on energy and freshwater from the ocean; and
- Establishing advanced marine station for ocean biology
The Deep Ocean Mission is proposed to be a Central Sector Scheme and no separate allocation for States is envisaged. The funds are expected to be allocated based on the above estimates.
It is proposed to collaborate with non-governmental organizations for research collaboration for various components of Deep Ocean Mission.
Under Deep Ocean Mission, it is proposed to develop, test and demonstrate the mining technology for harvesting of polymetallic nodules from the Test Mine Site (TMS) in the allocated area of 75000 sq. km in the Central Indian Ocean Basin (CIOB). A manned submersible for 6000 m depth is also proposed to be developed as an ocean exploratory tool.