Meet our people

MAC has built up a strong team of experienced professionals to work on its projects, bringing together expertise from different areas of archaeology, conservation and maritime projects to achieve the protection, recovery and conservation of submerged cultural patrimony.



Ian Panter is the Head of the conservation team at York Archaeological Trust (YAT) in the UK, MAC’s partner for the management of the conservation laboratory in Cartagena. He has extensive experience in managing the operation of laboratories conserving a wide range of artefacts from terrestrial, waterlogged and marine environments, both in the UK and overseas. 

His recent projects include preserving the timbers from the Swash Channel designated wreck, a 17th Century Dutch vessel trading in the West Indies, and artefacts from a wreck off the Sultanate of Oman.

Following graduation from the Institute of Archaeology, University of London in 1980 with a BSc Honours degree in archaeological conservation and materials science, Ian worked for the Mary Rose Trust and

Portsmouth City Museum before heading to York in 1990. Before taking up his current position with YAT Ian spent six years as an English Heritage Regional Science Advisor advising curators and developers on the archaeological science requirements for commercially- funded projects, as well as developing a specialism on reburial and in-situ preservation schemes, including deposit characterisation and monitoring procedures.



Mensun Bound is the former ‘Triton Fellow’ in maritime archaeology at St. Peter’s College, University of Oxford. He was educated at Fairleigh Dickinson University and Rutgers University in the USA on scholarship from the Leopold Schepp Foundation, New York. In 1985, he established the Marine Archaeological Research and Excavation (MARE) unit at Oxford.

Mensun has led a number of notable maritime archaeological expeditions, including the excavation of an Etruscan wreck close to Giglio Island, Italy. He also led the team which located the German World War 2 pocket battleship “Admiral Graf Spee” scuttled off Montevideo, Uruguay, in 1939. One of the guns from the ship was recovered and is on public display. He also excavated a Portuguese porcelain trader that went down off East Africa during the sixteenth century and a Tudor munitions carrier wrecked off Alderney Island, UK.

In addition, he has directed major mixed-gas diving excavations off Vietnam and in the Straits of Malacca.  He also searched for the warships lost at the Battle of the Falkland Islands in 1914, and sits on the board of the Falkland Island Maritime Heritage Trust.

His publications include “The Archaeology of Ships at War” (1995), “Excavating Ships of War” (1996), “Lost Ships” (1998) and “A Ship Cast Away About Alderney” (2001). In 1992, he was awarded the Colin Mcleod Award for “Furthering international co-operation in diving” by the British Sub Aqua Club.  His work has also been the subject of an award-winning, four-part documentary series for the Discovery Channel entitled “Lost Ships”.  In 1999-2000 he directed the deepest ‘hands-on’ excavation to date when he used saturation diving techniques to reach a porcelain wreck that was situated beyond standard diving depths in the South China Sea.  Excavated artefacts from his work are on permanent display in over ten museums around the world.



Dr. Fredrik Soreide is an adjunct professor in the department of marine technology at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim, Norway, and vice president of ProMare, a U.S. non-profit organization dedicated to promoting marine research and exploration throughout the world. Fredrik is currently working on ground breaking research into unmanned, autonomous vessel technology and ultra-deep robotics. 

He has worked on numerous maritime archaeological projects in more than ten countries. Most notably he was the Chief Scientist on the Ormen Lange shipwreck excavation,an 18th century merchant ship which sank in 170m of water in the North Sea. The Ormen Lange excavation was the first technologically advanced deepwater archaeology project relying only on a specially developed ROV, tooling and subsea

excavation frame methodology operated from a research vessel to enable the world’s first deepwater archaeological excavation.

His experience also includes the exploration of numerous ancient sites in the Mediterranean, and the wreck of the train ferry Hydro, which was sunk by the Norwegian resistance with its cargo of heavy water in 1944, preventing Hitler’s Germany from obtaining material needed for a nuclear device.  

Fredrik’s publications include “Ships from the Depths – Deepwater Archaeology (2011)”,”Ormen Lange – Pipelines and Shipwrecks (2007)” and “The Deepest Dig (2016)” as well as more than 100 scientific articles on marine technology and marine science.



Oliver Plunkett is MAC’s Finance Director. He is qualified as both a barrister and an accountant, and has practiced professionally in both England and Canada. He has represented the Crown Prosecution Service in the UK, and was a Director at PWC in London for over six years, specialising in taxation. He has worked for a large asset management company in a senior financial position, and most recently as CEO of Ocean Infinity,

the leading seabed information provider and bathymetric specialist.

MAC’s ROVs are fitted with sonar for mapping, sensors to gather data, to take samples or even to gently pick up and excavate fragile objects. With their precision control and powerful tools with multiple functions, ROVs undertake a variety of precision tasks important for the surveying of the wreck. In the next phase MAC’s ROV team will perform the ultimate excavation of the historic artefacts

of San Jose in a controlled and rigorous methodology. The ROVs can be fitted with water jets or small suction hoses to remove sediment from the wreck-site, so that archaeologists can access the objects lying beneath and expose the timbers from the mud.

MAC used ROVs to extensively map, photograph and survey the wreck in June 2016, and ROVs will be at the heart of the operation to collect and preserve the historic artefacts from San Jose when the excavation commences.


Almeida Estevez

Manuel Almeida Estevez graduated as a Chemical Engineer in 1980 and also holds a Master’s degree in the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Patrimony. He initially headed the laboratory of underwater archaeology conservation for the Cuban company CARISUB INC. In 2000, he was appointed specialist and chief of the Cabinet of Conservation and Restoration of the Office of the Historian of the City of Havana.  Currently, he is the advisor to the Cabinet of Archaeology of the Office of the Historian of the City of Havana for the conservation of archaeological objects from both terrestrial and underwater sites. 

He has been a UNESCO professor for Latin America and Caribbean since 1999, as well as a research professor in Conservation Restoration at the University of the Arts (ISA) and at the University of San Geronimo in Havana. He has led classes and workshops in Cuba as well as abroad, and has collaborated in the topic of the underwater archaeological conservation with different national and international institutions, in USA, Cape Verde, Mozambique, Venezuela, Spain, Panama and Colombia. He has published academic papers on the conservation of archaeological materials.



He received a degree in Physical Oceanography from Cuba’s Oceanographic Institute in 1971 and holds a Master of Science (MS) in Archaeology (1975) from the Institute of Social Science in Havana, Cuba.

He pioneered underwater archaeology in Cuba starting in 1968 and has devoted his life to researching Spanish archives, but also in archives in the UK and USA, and elsewhere.

He has devoted several years making deep-water shipwreck surveys and he is currently a consultant to Cuba’s Institute of Anthropology and the Archaeological Cabinet of the City of Havana.


del Cairo Hurtado *(text is not yet approved by Carlos)

Carlos del Cairo Hurtado holds a Master’s degree in Anthropology from the University of Los Andes, Colombia, and is a Doctoral candidate at the Sorbonne, Paris. He has published work on the archaeology of the Fort of San Felipe on the Isla de Tierra Bomba in Cartagena des Indas, Colombia and edited a collection of research entitled “Submerged History” on the underwater cultural heritage of Latin America, including his own research into underwater fortifications off Cartagena. He has also produced publications in Spanish for the Naval Museum of the Caribbean in Cartagena and in the academic journal “Memorias”.



Ross Hyett is the Chairman of MAC, bringing many years of experience in project financing, special investments and structured financial products. Ross is also director of a number of financial services companies in the UK. Ross holds membership of the Personal Finance Society and the Society of Technical Analysts and has Certified Financial Planner status with the Institute of Financial Planners. He has contributed to many publications, including the successful books “How To Finance Your Retirement” and “Wealth Strategies For Your Business”.



George Horsington is MAC’s Project Director. He holds a Master’s in History from Downing College, University of Cambridge, and an MBA from the University of Liverpool, UK. He has worked for over twenty years in the marine industry, specialising in vessel chartering, ship management and project execution, managing large, multi-national teams. He began his career with the Swire Group in Hong Kong and has subsequently lived and worked in Switzerland, Singapore, Dubai and Baku as well, providing marine services to a range of clients in the offshore oil and gas sector, and in other areas of maritime activity.