Chinese Supersonic Submarine

Discussion in 'Naval Warfare' started by sesha_maruthi27, Aug 30, 2014.

  1. sesha_maruthi27

    sesha_maruthi27 Senior Member Senior Member

    Aug 15, 2010
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    Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh(INDIA)

    Chinese scientists are working on a supersonic submarine that will ‘fly’ in an air bubble

    Researchers in China are reportedly developing a submarine that moves in its own air bubble, reducing drag and allowing it to travel faster than commercial airplanes.

    Researchers at the Harbin Institute of Technology in China have told the South China Morning Post that they’re working on technology that could allow a submarine to travel the 9,816 km from “Shanghai to San Francisco in 100 minutes”. Currently, the fastest submarines are stuck at speeds of 74 km/h.
    That impressive feat would require the submarine to travel at a rate faster than the speed of sound, or supersonic speeds, and, in theory, it is possible, by creating an air bubble that the vessel ‘flies’ through, technology known as supercavitation.
    But, and this is a big but, it’s unlikely the Chinese will be able to move a submarine that fast anytime soon. As Jordan Golson explains for Wired, supercavitation is a proven technology that can definitely speed up submarines. But while, in theory, it’s possible, there are some big obstacles.
    A supercavitating submarine works by ejecting gas through its nose with enough force to form water vapour, which then creates a bubble of air that encompasses the vessel. Russian scientists have already used supercavitation to get their Shkval torpedo in the 1960s and ‘70s to move at 370 km/h, but they could only sustain the speed for a few kilometres.
    One of the biggest issues with sustaining these speeds is that it is extremely hard to steer supercavitating submarines.
    As Golson explains in Wired:
    "A traditional submarine is controlled by a rudder, much like a conventional boat. Steering a supercavitating vessel requires having control planes pierce the bubble, producing great drag. These planes also would be under tremendous force and pressure at speed, and would need to be extraordinarily strong."
    Another big challenge is the fact that, to produce the bubble in the first place, submarines would need to launch at speeds of 75 km/h - something current submarines aren’t capable of. Golson believes that design-wise this will be difficult to overcome, especially if the Chinese want to build proper submarines, and not just torpedoes.
    But, the researchers in China told the South China Morning Post that they’ve developed a liquid membrane that can help to solve both issues. This membrane would be constantly showered onto the surface of the submarine, and although it would gradually be washed off by water, it could help reduce drag and get the submarines to the initial speed of 75 km/h, when the bubble would take over.
    The liquid membrane could also help with steering because, depending on spray pattern, the controllers could create different levels of friction on different parts of the vessel, the South China Morning Post explains.
    "Our method is different from any other approach, such as vector propulsion … By combining liquid-membrane technology with supercavitation, we can significantly reduce the launch challenges and make cruising control easier,” Li Fengchen, a professor of fluid machinery and engineering at the Harbin Institute of Technology’s Complex Flow and Heat Transfer Lab told the South China Morning Post.
    Of course, there are still other obstacles to overcome, such as a rocket engine that has enough range to take the submarine across the Atlantic at such high speeds. And due to the lack of specific details provided by the Chinese scientists, many researchers are doubtful.
    “It’s a quantum leap to making a supersonic submarine,” Roger Anrdt, a professor with the University of Minnesota’s Cavitation and Bubbly Flows Research Group in the US, told Golson at Wired. “What they’re showing doesn’t give an inkling of what technology they’ve got.”
    But in theory, Golson explains, it is possible. And if successful, the submarine wouldn’t only have military use, it could also be used as a form of transport. The same technology could also be used to help swimmers reach unprecedented speeds.
    Who said travel by sea was outdated?

    Chinese scientists are working on a supersonic submarine that will ‘fly’ in an air bubble (Science Alert)
    pmaitra likes this.
  3. Anoop Sajwan

    Anoop Sajwan Regular Member

    Apr 15, 2012
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    Perhaps they got cavitation technology from One Piece.
    but that will be a break through definetly.
    sesha_maruthi27 likes this.

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