A shipwreck has been found off the Sicilian coastline buried by two metres of sand. The wreck is of a Byzantine ship and was discovered off Ragusa at a depth of three metres.

Specialists in underwater archaeology from the University of Udine, with the Kaukana project, are now examining the wreck. Underwater excavations are led by Massimo Capulli, professor of underwater and naval archaeology at the Department of Humanities and Cultural Heritage Studies (Dium) at the University of Udine, and by Sebastiano Tusa, of the Soprintendenza del mare della Regione Sicilia, with the support of the Institute of Nautical Archaeology of the Texas A&M University College Station.

Divers have constructed a transverse trench along the ship’s axis so that they would be able to carry on their research and documentation of the wreck. As part of the project is to train underwater archaeologists, other means were also used, such as a water dredger, a metal casing designed and built for the purpose of this investigation, and digging out part of the wreck. The part of the ship that has been uncovered so far is four metres long and two metres wide. The measurements allowed specialists to collect data for performing 3D scans and samples for radiometric dating. The data will be processed by the Aquatic Archaeology Laboratory of the Department of Humanities and Cultural Heritage. The project has been technically supported by the Ibleo Blue Diving Centre.