Lesley Stahl of 60 Minutes is not only one of my favorite people in the universe, she also happens to have one of the greatest jobs on Earth. A week ago Lesley profiled the amazing story of a New York restaurateur whose passion for saving turtles and tortoises from extinction found her in the jungles of Madagascar where she got a first-hand look at team and ground work behind the amazing operation. It’s a brilliant story, and you can watch it below. And not to be outdone, Lesley quickly hopped on a plane for the Italian island of Giglio off the west coast of Italy where she and her producer got a VIP tour of the Costa Concordia cruise liner wreck and a fascinating glimpse into the mind-boggling engineering that is behind the salvage operation of the ship which ran aground on January 13, 2012. Among the most astonishing insights are the following: 1) the computer model that was created to predict how the ship will behave on the day it is finally tipped over in summer 2013 requires three supercomputers to process, and calculations take upwards of two weeks; 2) the ship cannot be cut apart in the sea because of the fact it is smack-dab in the middle of a pristine marine reserve; 3) the amount of steel that is going into the underwater base platform, as well as the giant rows of steel buoy tanks that are being welded along each side of the ship will use the same amount of steel as three Eiffel Towers. It is one of the most expensive and daunting salvage operations in human history.
Watch Lesely Stahl’s Report On Mindblowing Engineering Involved In Costa Concordia Salvage Operation
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