BACKSTORY (June 11, 2007–PRESENT): The names of the subs are Nautilus (107), Scout (207), Voyager (307), Mariner (407), Seafarer (507), Explorer (607), Neptune (707), Argonaut (807). This attraction opened June 11, with Annual Passholder preview days one week beforehand. Imagineer Kevin Rafferty explained the ride in a Disney Insider email: “Guests visit the undersea exploration company, the Nautical Exploration and Marine Observation institute (Nemo) and go along for the ride as the institute explores an underwater volcano. A trip to Mount Wannahockaloogie is also included, but on the way Guests will encounter Marlin & Dory, ride the East Australian Current, meet a couple of sharks face to face, survive a mine explosion that plunges them to the depths of the sea, traverse a hazardous school of jellyfish, and even be ejected from the spout of a whale before they return safely to shore.” In explaining the colorful underwater environment, Kevin said this: “We wanted beautiful, brilliant colors for our undersea world. The sun has an adverse effect on paint—it tends to fade it through the water. Also, paint colors never seem brilliant enough underwater. So Imagineering developed a new technology, basically painting with glass. There were several tons of recycled glass applied to the undersea environment. The results maintain the colors we wanted to portray, and because it’s colored glass it will never fade in the sun.”
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