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Nautilus 100 could be submarine of the future

Nautilus 100 could be submarine of the future

The Royal Navy has unveiled a concept for a futuristic submarine which could one day be patrolling our waters.

A team from the naval warfare force have designed a special high-tech submarine called Nautilus 100, which is inspired by the shape of a whale shark and a manta ray.

Writing about the design on their website, they shared: "The whale shark/manta ray-shaped mothership would be built from super-strong alloys and acrylics, with surfaces which can morph in shape. With hybrid algae-electric cruising power and propulsion technologies including tunnel drives which work similarly to a Dyson bladeless fan, the submarine could travel at unprecedented speeds of up to 150 knots.

"This mothership would be capable of launching unmanned underwater vehicles shaped like eels, which carry pods packed with sensors for different missions. These pods can damage an enemy vessel, or dissolve on demand at the end of an operation to evade detection. The project, named Nautilus 100, was set up to mark the 100th anniversary of the launch of the USS Nautilus, the world's first nuclear-powered submarine."

The team also designed autonomous pods that could be sent off by the mothership to gather more information to allow commanders to make more informed decisions or dispatch weapons.

They added: "These eel-like UUVs would be the main sensors and secondary weapons carriers launched from the weapons bays on top of the mothership. Capable of complete autonomy, they could travel hundreds of miles in near silence using an eel-like sine wave propulsion motion. This disguises them as real marine lifeforms in the eyes of an enemy's sensors.

"Their main purpose would be to eject individual sensor pods, each using blue-green laser energy to communicate, forming a self-meshing underwater network with secure command and control hundreds of miles apart. These multi-purpose sensors would also listen for residual sound energy or electro-magnetic disturbances, sharing vast amounts of data using artificial intelligence to provide battle-winning automated assessment and decision making for defensive and offensive operations."

Whilst Commander Peter Pipkin, the Royal Navy's Fleet Robotics Officer, shared: "Today's Royal Navy is one of the most technologically advanced forces in the world, and that's because we have always sought to think differently and come up with ideas that challenge traditional thinking. If only 10 per cent of these ideas become reality, it will put us at the cutting edge of future warfare and defence operations."

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