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29th January, 1644 started the second expedition of Tasman

On the 29th of January, 1644 small fleet headed by the Dutchman Abel Tasman Yanszon sailed off from Batavia to the east. The expedition included 111 people.

During the voyage Tasman made notes of everything he saw and thus managed to map the south coast of New Guinea. In total, he explored 750 km of coastline. Another achievement is the completion of the opening of the huge Gulf Kampentariya, located near the northern coast of Australia. Thanks to the efforts of the Tasman and whiskers, geographical map of that time had accurate data of the western and northern parts of Australian coastline.

Tasman was not able to prove that there is a strait between Gulf Kampentariya and Van Diemen's land. This meant that all lands (except Van Diemen's Land) discovered by Dutch explorers are part of one and the same continent - Australia. Exactly Tasman discovered and mapped the Gulf of Joseph Bonaparte, Gulf of Van Diemen's Land, and several other bays. As a result, a map of the peninsula Arnhem Land was charted. On the 4th of August Tasman expedition returned back to Batavia.

Later, Ivan Krusenstern said about high accuracy of Tasman’s astronomical observations. During the voyage Dutch sailors explored and mapped 5500 km of coastline, 60% of this data was not previously known by Europeans. 

This Day in History 29-01-2013