Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Fabien Cousteau Launches Plans To Build "The International Space Station Of The DEEP-SEA"

Fabien Cousteau

Launches Plan To Build 

The International Space Station 


 'On The Shoulders of Giants' 

In the photo above we see Fabien Cousteau with his grandfather 
Jacques-Yves Cousteau who is the greatest explorer in history.

Fabien Cousteau is the eldest grandson of egendary Rolex wearing aquanaut and undersea explorer Jacques-Yves Cousteau. In one of the most ambitious DEEP-SEA endeavors in history, Fabien plans to build the largest underwater habitat to house 'SEA-DWELLERS" in 60 feet of depth in the Caribbean off the coast of Curaçao

Fabien Cousteau's two-story modular PROTEUS Habitat was designed by renowned Swiss industrial designer, Yves Béhar and is pictured above and below. This amazing habitat will provide a home for oceanographic researchers and scientists from across planet earth to study the effects of climate change as well as developing medicinal breakthroughs based upon marine life.

Fabien Cousteau's habitat will be powered by solar-energy and wind, as well as thermal ocean energy technology. The PROTEUS Habitat will feature the world's first underwater greenhouse for growing fresh food and will also be feature an onboard video production studio which will regularly be broadcasting over the internet live to classrooms all over earth—the object of which is to educate future generations of humanity to appreciate the amazing underwater world so they will be inspired to preserve it.


Vision Statement by Fabien Cousteau Written July 9, 2020

We should call our planet Ocean. Without water, Earth would be just one of billions of lifeless rocks floating endlessly in the vastness of the inky-black void. Not only has the ocean created life as we know it, but it also sustains it, providing the leading source of oxygen, fresh water and nourishment--as well as countless jobs in trade, tourism and travel. Whether we are conscious of it or not, the ocean dictates our trajectory--everywhere, every day.

Since it’s the cradle of life itself, it stands to reason the ocean is the source where we will find the answers we seek for the health of humanity and the future of our planet. We will begin to accomplish this through PROTEUSTM, my vision for the world’s most advanced underwater laboratory, built to address earth’s most pressing issues. Despite the ocean representing over 99% of our world’s living space (and 332 million cubic miles), only 5% has been explored to any significant degree. The ocean remains an incredible source of dynamic data, sustainable energy solutions, and the potential for future medicines. PROTEUSTM will be capable of hosting more people than any other underwater habitat, and feasibly for much longer. It grants the gift of time to aquanauts and scientists, leading to exponential research. The knowledge that will be uncovered undersea will forever change the way generations of humans live up above.

Over sixty years ago, my grandfather, Jacques-Yves Cousteau, made groundbreaking oceanic discoveries leading the first crew to successfully live and explore underwater in Conshelf II. Situated in the Red Sea, he and his crewmates explored the greatness of the area via the aid of SCUBA, his co-invention. I’ve honored his accomplishments--and the other brilliant minds he was surrounded by--through continuing to invent, explore, and educate about the ocean’s importance.

In 2014, I led Mission 31, the longest continuous underwater discovery expedition in history at Aquarius, the world’s only remaining underwater lab, which is about the size of a school bus. In just 31 days, we performed three years worth of equivalent scientific research, leading to the publication of over 9,800 articles and 12 scientific papers. The world watched and listened with 34 billion media impressions. We live-streamed the mission, connecting with hundreds of thousands of citizens around the world. Building from the lessons learned from Mission 31, I want us to be able to live and work underwater for longer--to go deeper and further. I have envisioned PROTEUSTM, over four times the size of Aquarius, to be the marine research platform that will allow us to do that.

PROTEUSTM extends the legacy of my grandfather, Jacques Cousteau, and embodies his famous quote, “People protect what they love, they love what they understand, and they understand what they are taught.” Until more people feel they have access to the ocean and can understand what it can provide and how they are connected to it, change cannot be enacted. The more we learn about our human connection to the ocean, the more we can grapple with what we need to know, make better decisions to secure a sustainable future to pass on to the next generations. 

With the aid of new technologies and through carrying and honoring the knowledge of those who came before us, we will build PROTEUSTM to be almost completely sustainable.
We need to make the ocean feel more personal, to have everyone realize that their everyday actions affect the ocean’s health--and in return, the health of humanity. With over 7.8 billion humans (and growing) on this planet, our actions are adding up; the ocean is feeling our heavy influence. Whatever we put down our drain or into the air, makes its way towards and into the water. It is a closed loop system--there is no such thing as throwing “away”.

While I have been diving since I was four years old--not many have or have been exposed to the ocean so intimately. PROTEUSTM will hold the first underwater, state-of-the-art video production studio, connecting to the world with technology like WiFi6+, allowing for incredibly rich videos to be produced and shared. Such tools as these are vital to personalizing the knowledge of the ocean and the impact that we are having as humans on our planet PROTEUSTM proves that when a dream is audacious enough, nothing can vanquish it. 

In many ways, PROTEUSTM is our generation’s Moon landing. Before it was reality, the Moon landing was just a dream that hardly anyone thought could come true. Fifty years later, we are embarking on the next great mission that I will lead. We need this next big step in ocean exploration and research to advance science and solve some of the critical issues facing humanity today. I want to explore the oceans of Mars – but until we can go there and return safely, the Earth’s oceans still hold quite a few secrets that are the keys to our future.

We must dare to dream bigger. Let us make history--while solving for our future--with PROTEUS.

The video below features an interview that took place earlier today with Fabien Cousteau: 


Transforming Humanity’s Connection with the Ocean 

Design Statement by Yves Béhar

As a California resident and long-time surfer, I have always had a strong connection and appreciation for the ocean. There’s a respect for the ocean – its power and its mystery. As our planet faces increasing environmental crises—crises that are especially hard to ignore from my home in San Francisco—the ocean has become even more of a central force on the world stage, with flooding and surges decimating coastlines from Florida to India. As we look for design solutions to protect ourselves and our world from increasingly harsh climates, it is imperative that we first design new ways to study the sea.

As such, my team at fuseproject and I decided to get involved with an organization that brings together technical experts in different fields to conduct independent research, secure capital funding, and form new partnerships to address issues of global importance. Through these conversations I met Fabien Cousteau, first grandson of Jacques-Yves Cousteau. Our passions and sense of purpose aligned: we are both deeply invested in the health of our oceans and believe that ocean science and exploration is crucial not only to conservation but to the very health and viability of our planet.

This relationship developed into a trusting partnership and now a collaboration with Fabien and the Fabien Cousteau Ocean Learning Center’s most important project to date – and one that I am deeply grateful to be involved in. The team at fuseproject are designing concepts for PROTEUS​ - Fabien’s vision to develop a permanent underwater research station that will advance scientific and oceanic research by making it livable for scientists to work for long periods of time, in order to carry out a variety of research missions. Fabien shared his idea to create a research center that could serve global science and research institutions, attract entrepreneurs and inventors, and educate students of all ages.

Understanding the limitations of underwater research better than anyone – setting the then world record for longest amount of time living under water at 31 days – Fabien and his team know the research potential will be exponentially accelerated when scientists can live, explore and analyze uninterrupted for extended periods of time.

At 4,000 square feet, PROTEUS​TM will be three or four times the size of any previously built sub marine habitats, accommodating up to twelve people at once. Attached to the ocean floor by legs designed to adapt to the variable terrain, the design is based on the concept of a spiral. A series of modular pods are attached to the main body of PROTEUS​TM and accommodate a variety of uses such as laboratories, sleeping quarters, bathrooms, medical bays, life support systems and storage. The largest pod contains a moon pool allowing submersibles to dock. These pods can be attached or detached to adapt to the specific needs of the users over time.

The two levels of PROTEUS​TM are connected by a spiral ramp to encourage physical activity and movement for the inhabitants. The ramp connects the main spaces within PROTEUS​TM which are designed to feel inviting and comfortable, an approach which is a departure from most facilities of this nature which typically forego comfort and a sense of home in favor of cold utility. These common spaces include a living room, kitchen, dining, and work areas. PROTEUS​TM will also have the first underwater greenhouse so residents can grow fresh plant food in order to solve the challenge of not being able to cook with open flames.

Two of the other biggest challenges to staying underwater for longer spans of time is the social isolation and lack of natural light. PROTEUS​TM​’s central spaces will provide physical comfort, social connection and professional collaboration. Additionally, the station will be designed to gather as much light as possible from windows, on the top, and around the sides of the structure.

My hope is that the same passion we have for space exploration and the space station will converge to our ocean station. With this first step, humans can interact with the very entity they hope to understand: our oceans. We can begin to lay the foundation for a more sustainable existence moving forward. _____________________________________

“PROTEUS​TM​’s design intent is to offer an effective, comfortable and attractive destination for researchers, and an exciting underwater structure that garners the same passion for ocean exploration as we have for space exploration. The PROTEUS​TM spiral architecture houses social and workspaces as well as a communication studio and a submersible moonpool. Surrounded by pods for sleeping quarters, research labs, and facilities that can be modified and added on over time, PROTEUS​TM is both practical and an icon that will change the way we experience ocean research.”

—Yves Behar

Cousteau Legacy

It's A Family Affair

The Cousteau Family

The Life Aquatic

"From birth, man carries the weight of gravity on his shoulders. He is bolted to earth, but man has only to sink beneath the surface and he is free." 

—Jacques-Yves Cousteau

In the famous family portrait below we see Jacques-Yves with his two sons, Philippe and Jean-Michel Cousteau (far right). Jean-Michel is Fabien's father. I originally interviewed Jean-Michel back in 2018 and also just got off the phone with him today!

Jean-Michel Cousteau is in the photo below that was inspired by the family portrait above, with his children Fabien and Céline Cousteau. 

Jean-Michel Cousteau was very close with his father and help produce many episodes of The Underwater World of Jacques Cousteau.

Jean-Michel Cousteau is pictured below in 1989 in Papaua, New Guinea with his father, Jacques-Cousteau aboard the Calypso, and notice he is wearing his Rolex SEA-DWELLER. I asked Jean-Michel what his first recollection was of wearing a Rolex Submariner and he told me it was when he was stationed in Madagascar in 1958 while serving in the French Navy.

I spoke with Jean-Michel Cousteau today and he pointed out to me that he is the oldest know SCUBA diver alive today. He said:

"I am 82 years old today, and when I was seven years old, back in 1945, my father (Jaques-Yves Cousteau) put a mask on my face, attached to a tank on my back and pushed me off of his Calypso ship into the ocean, and that is how I learned to Scuba dive. I also think that makes me the oldest Scuba diver alive today, as my father and his right hand man Albert Falco are unfortunately no longer with us."

Jean-Michel Cousteau is pictured below from a TV documentary SCUBA Diving with his daughter Céline and son Fabien Cousteau. 

Jacques Cousteau not only invented SCUBA diving but taught his wife and two sons how to dive which you see in the photo below. Jacques Cousteau's oldest son, Jean-Michel is pictured on the far left; Jacques wife, Simone is pictured in the center; then Jacques Cousteau with his younger son Philippe Cousteau  pictured on the far right exploring in the Mediterranean Sea.

In the photo below taken by Fabien's mother, Ann-Marie Cousteau, we see young Fabien on the right with his grandfather, Jacques-Yves and his sister Céline Cousteau.

In this next photo we see Jean-Michel Cousteau with his daughter Céline and son Fabien Cousteau.

In this next photo we see Fabien Cousteau with Rolex ambassador, Dr. Sylvia Earle.

"The sea, once it casts its spell, 

holds one in its net of wonder forever." 

—Jacques-Yves Cousteau

The photo below shows Jacques-Yves Cousteau with Swiss Physicist Auguste Piccard in 1948, in front of the Bathyscaphe F.N.R.S II Submarine which Piccard designed. Captain Jacques-Yves Cousteau referred to the The F.N.R.S. II as the "Original Deep-Boat." The takeaway point from this image is that Cousteau was a very early Submariner.

Auguste Piccard & Jacques-Yves Cousteau in 1948 
in front of the Bathyscaphe F.N.R.S. II

Jacques-Yves Cousteau worked with Rolex to test the early Submariner prototypes back in 1953 along with members of his Calypso team. In the photo below we see Cousteau rocking his Submariner with his lead diver, Albert Falco, from a scene from his seminal Academy Award Winning Documentary titled "The Silent World."

Our world NEEDS Jacques-Yves Cousteau now more than ever! He may no longer be with us, but his amazing grandson is returning to DWELL in the SEA and hopefully educated and inspire future generations in the same way his legendary grandfather, Jacques-Yves Cousteau.