GROTON, Conn.--If you've ever wondered what it's like aboard the most advanced submarine in the world, I'm here to tell you all about it.
To be specific, that submarine is the North Carolina, a Virginia class nuclear attack sub based at the Naval Submarine Base New London here, and it is truly a technological marvel.
To begin with, forget all about those romantic images of a dimly lighted sonar room where a captain squints into the eyepiece of the periscope in order to try to see what's going on outside. Those days are long gone. … Read more
I want to be more like Richard Branson. I'm sorry, I meant Sir Richard Branson. He may not be the absolute richest guy around, but he has enough wealth to use it in some awesome ways. Right now, he's using it to buy a personal submarine that carries a pilot and two well-off visitors for extended underwater excursions.
Above, you'll see the Necker Nymph. It's a carbon fiber personal submarine made by Hawkes Ocean Technologies that you can rent out if you're lucky enough to be staying on Branson's $88k-a-week Caribbean island. The fee … Read more
Bucking the open-source trend, the British Royal Navy has developed a modified version of Microsoft Windows XP and has begun installing it on its fleet of nuclear submarines.
The new Submarine Command System Next Generation (SMCS NG) employs standard multifunction consoles with double LCD screens, linked with "commercial grade" cables and software to internal Ethernet local area networks (LANs) aboard each sub.
Ever thrifty, the spit-and-baling-wire Brits went with Windows in part because it was cheaper to maintain. The use of commercial off-the-shelf technology is expected to save the U.K. taxpayers up to $32 million over the … Read more
HALF MOON BAY, Calif.--Got $1.2 million to blow on toys? Forget the conspicuous Veyron, which is sure to draw derision from everyone you pass. Instead, take your toys underwater: U.S. Submarines' Triton Model 1000, being made now, will take you and a friend 1,000 feet straight down, and keep you there for 6 hours while you gaze at the fish and reflect on your extravagance.
Shockingly, we're finding that not everyone can afford to pay the $80 million or even the $12 million charged by U.S. Submarines to make custom luxury submersibles. But there's still hope for you cheapskates out there who still wish to play Captain Nemo.
Dubai-based Exomos will sell you your very own yellow submarine (or blue, green, orange, black or white) for only $40,000. The battery-powered "Goby" model carries three people and can cruise up to 40 meters below the surface for 8 kilometers per charge, according to Red Ferret, with on-board GPS and sonar … Read more
That's why some very wealthy adventurers are apparently flocking to U.S. Submarines of Portland, Ore., a company that builds custom models "for the eccentric billionaires who want mysterious and secret subs," according to Luxurylaunches. It says there are 100 luxury subs now in the water with unidentified owners. (Does DHS know about this?)
The price of covert underwater travel is predictably high, ranging from $12 million to $80 million. But you can get … Read more
Once again, the top dog among robotic subs is a Gator.
There aren't many details to offer just yet on how Sunday's finals went. So far, it's just the Gators and the Proteus team from Cornell University that have posted brief notes on who won. Cornell reports that it finished fourth overall, behind Florida, the University of Rhode Island's (Ram-boat 8) and Montreal's Ecole de Technologie Superieure (… Read more
Collegiate teams from around the country--and a few from abroad--are arriving in San Diego for a competition to see who has the best robotic sub.
Wednesday is the check-in and orientation day for teams entered in the 10th annual Autonomous Underwater Vehicle Competition, put on by the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International and the Office of Naval Research. Then come several days of in-water practice and qualifying runs, with the finals scheduled for Sunday.
The gist of the challenge is this: the robot vessels have to navigate their way across a large pool following a set course. They must … Read more