For a long time we favoured the shape of a sphere mainly because there were ready structures available used as pressure resistant LPG tanks. It would have measured 12m in diameter, the lower half would be filled with sand just before lowering while the upper half would contain two floors of living space. After discussing the idea with different engineers we had to accept that a LPG tank would need so many modifications that building a new one would be even cheaper. After receiving the first cost estimations we were pretty sure that it would be impossible to find funding for a civil structure of that scale.
Continue reading “Undersea Station Draft No. 3: Sphere”
Keeping an air filled structure on the sea-floor is more difficult than expected. Especially while descending and landing the station major difficulties occurred on previous stations. We can calculate about one kilo of weight (negative buoyancy) per litre of air inside the station (positive buoyancy). The dimensions are huge: imagine a space of 50 m² with a height of 2m, which equals 100 tons of counterweight. At the same time it has to be considered, that these weights have to be lifted again in the end of the mission. For ecological reasons we should find a way to leave the weights on the site and to use a material that would not harm the environment. Continue reading “Undersea Station: Ballast”