Together with the popular MARES Diving Center of IWM of Dieter Heinz in Antalya/Turkey we decided in 2006 to construct a simple diving bell for touristic purposes in a depth of appr. 9m. This diving bell would serve as an advertisement carrier, sales tool and later as a decompression stop bell if successfully positioned. It should last for at least two years being removed during six winter months. As a design we wanted the construction to follow the shape of a jelly fish and to look a bit futuristic. After agreeing and drawing the final design we calculated costs of 1000 € which included the umbrella, the skeleton, the counterweights and the working force. Continue reading “Diving Bell ‘Medusa’”
Growing plants in the undersea station will be very difficult. But the experiment below brought the following question to my mind: If the site of the station would be the Mediterranean, which is a subtropical environment, then the main season would be the summertime. During that period many crops would not grow due to sunlight intensity and heat. The project in the video might be an alternative to use the seawater as a light filter and cooling medium. Would it be worth to investigate?
Longer stays in an underwater station require systems to filter out Carbon Dioxide (CO2) from the air that is exhaled by the aquanauts. These CO2 scrubbers generally consist of a fan that pulls air through a canister filled with Carbon Dioxide (CO2) adsorbent, such as Sodasorb or Sodalime. To get a rough idea about CO2 scrubbers and their prices visit the webpage of AMRON International.
So far the final draft follows the hangar shape. Having a look at the evaluation list in the ‘Structural Shape‘ chapter it seems like the ideal shape for the undersea station.
Because of the sand used as variable ballast and the space under the station the structure is easily removable by just releasing the sand. No harmful materials or items would be left behind which serves the ecological idea. Continue reading “Undersea Station Draft No.4: Hangar”
One of the differences to other previous stations is the fact that it is not only available for a small group of scientists, but to a large group even of private participants. Of course, it still requires a very strict program to enter the station. The idea is to settle the station inside a park (The Calamar-Park) and make it available for all sport divers. For this touristic purpose a row of activities and attractions has to be designed. These attractions will follow a chronological program to maintain continuous popularity. That means that when an attraction reaches its half-time period another attraction should be already on its way as seen in the following graph: Continue reading “Undersea Station: Event Plan”
Updated 13.05.2017; 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.
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”
One of the reasons why the first generation of underwater stations came to an end in the 80’s was the conlusion that it is more effective to use decompression chambers on board of a support vessel instead of placing divers on the bottom of the sea. The oil industry just did not see any reason for undersea stations. Therefore it was surprising that China announced in 2012 that they planned to build an undersea mining station of 60 meters length Continue reading “Chinese Underwater Station”