What is cooler than a state of the art race car? A state of the art race car than can run on the bottom of the ocean, that’s what.
We may not have all the things Back to the Future II promised us technology-wise, but human innovation certainly made up for it in other ways. A company called DeepFlight just came out with a submersible vehicle called the Dragon, and this is what it looks like:
The Dragon is designed as an easier-to-use alternative to the company’s Super Falcon, a submarine that lets you “fly” underwater. After a successful run at a Monaco yacht show a few years ago, the team decided to come up with a lighter vehicle that almost anyone could take and pilot themselves without extensive experience.
During an electric aircraft conference soon after, DeepFlight founder and chief technology officer Graham Hawkes saw the work being done on air quadcopters and realized he could make a version of it for under the sea. That was the aha moment that led to the Dragon’s creation.
What makes the Dragon really cool? Let’s start with the way it looks: it’s like a quadcopter and a formula 1 race car decided to get together and make a beautiful baby.
Underneath the hood, the Dragon sub has hovering capability, making it possible for explorers to ride beside sea animals and check out underwater wrecks. It comes with thrusters and an underwater lithium battery pack that can last up to 6 hours.
In an email to the Daily Dot, a company spokesperson also explained that the Dragon is the smallest and lightest two-person submarine in existence and has the ability to operate from boat or shore. Weighing in at 1,800 kilograms and measuring just 5 meters in length, the Dragon is tiny enough to fit on more compact yachts compared to other subs available.
The sub utilizes DeepFlight’s proprietary software to ensure that almost anyone can dive the Dragon and take control of the machine with minimal training. Its pilot can easily navigate, monitor and manage critical ride controls, and set depth limits for the ride.
It’s also positively buoyant, making it extremely safe. There’s no need to feel claustrophobic while submerged—the Dragon is guaranteed to always automatically find its way back to the surface. Take a look at this animated demonstration of what the Dragon can do:
The Dragon submersible is brand new, but since its official launch a few weeks ago, DeepFlight has been approached by several potential buyers. While you’re not required to be a licensed diver or experienced pilot to drive the Dragon, having a boat or a yacht to operate the craft from certainly is a plus in terms of ease of operation; you can also operate from the beach, a boat ramp, and other shore locations. Additionally, the company ensures that their clients are properly briefed on launching procedures so no accidents occur.
For now, the only requirement to call the Dragon yours is a massive bank account. This F1-inspired sub will set you back a cool $1.5 million.
Photos via DeepFlight