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The expedition will use imaging technology and sonar devices that never have been used before on the Titanic wreck and will probe nearly a century of sediment in the debris field to seek a full inventory of the ship’s artifacts.

“We’re actually treating it like a crime scene,” Mr. Gallo said. “We want to know what’s out there in that debris field, what the stern and the bow are looking like.”

The expedition will be based on the RV Jean Charcot, a 250-foot research vessel with a crew of 20. Three submersibles and the latest sonar, acoustic and video technology also will be part of the expedition.

“Never before have we had the scientific and technological means to discover so much of an expedition to Titanic,” said P.H. Nargeolet, who is co-leading the expedition. He has made more than 30 dives to the wreck.

Bill Lange, a Woods Hole scientist who will lead the optical survey and will be one of the first to visit the wreck, said a key analysis will be comparing images from the first expedition 25 years ago and new images to measure decay and erosion.

“We’re going to see things we haven’t seen before. That’s a given,” he said. “The technology has really evolved in the last 25 years.”

Mr. Davino said he anticipates future salvage expeditions to the wreck, and Mr. Gallo said he doesn’t expect the science to end with one trip.

“I’m sure there will be future expeditions because this is the just the beginning of a whole new era of these kind of expeditions to Titanic — serious, archaeological mapping expeditions,” Mr. Gallo said.

RMS Titanic is awaiting a judge’s ruling in Norfolk, Va., on the 5,500 artifacts it has in its possession.

The company is seeking limited ownership of the artifacts as compensation for its salvage efforts. In its court filing for a salvage award, the company put the fair market value of the collection at $110.9 million.

U.S. District Judge Rebecca Beach Smith, a maritime jurist who is presiding over the hearings, has called the wreck an “international treasure.”