Pt Richmond, CA – Hawkes Ocean Technologies announced Sir Richard Branson will be taking delivery this month of the newest DeepFlight Submersible. DeepFlight Merlin, a state of the art 3-person aero submarine, is the newest edition to Virgin Limited Edition’s properties, and will be delivered to Branson’s private resort, Necker Island in the Caribbean, this month. Operating on the same principles as flight through air, this open cockpit winged sub, dubbed Necker Nymph by Virgin, is the first of its kind to hit the market.
Designed and built by renowned engineer, Graham Hawkes, of Hawkes Ocean Technologies, DeepFlight Merlin represents a new class of high-performance, positively buoyant vehicles which safely extend the overall capabilities of scuba, while offering the unique experience of underwater flight. Unlike all conventional submersibles which use ballast to sink in the water, the DeepFlight submersibles uses downward ‘lift’ on the wings to fly down to depth.
Underwater flight takes ocean exploration to another level. Gliding on the water’s surface like an airplane on a runway, one of the three pilots will operate the joystick to smoothly dive down, and the thrilling experience begins. Uncover ancient shipwrecks, fly side-by-side with dolphins, or spyhop with whales; the options are endless. With the flexibility to glide peacefully over glorious reefs or bank adventurously in 360 degrees turns, the sub is hydrobatic. Individual “wind shields” remove the pressure of slipstream, enabling comfortable speed and ranges previously unthinkable without enclosing the pilots. The open cockpits afford near ideal 360 degree viewing for occupants, creating a uniquely open experience.
This newest DeepFlight submersible is equipped with state of the art, patented safety systems; pilots follow standard SCUBA procedures. Importantly, all DeepFlight craft, have near-zero environmental impact. Its positive buoyancy prevents the sub from landing on a reef, and its low light and noise emissions ensure the fragile ocean ecosystems remain undisturbed.
Virgin Limited Edition
Hawkes Ocean Technologies
Filed Under: Materials • advanced, Motion control • motor controls