Moby Dick was tested in April 7-14 and became the first Russian underwater robot reaching such depth. The submersible explored the Baikal’s bottom at 650-meter depth and dived down to 850 meters. The descent and lifting were powered by own engines. Initially, Moby Dick was planned to reach the 1,000-meter depth, however, the diving site was chosen improperly, so the distance from the surface to the bottom exceeded 1,200 meters.
The submersible is created especially for deep waters, emphasized Mikhail Loktionov. Russia has never operated underwater robots at such depths, he added proudly.
Evgeny Tatarenko, professor at the Information & Measurement Hardware Department at the Samara State Technical University and the underwater robots designer, in the interview to Mil.Today said the Moby Dick’s dive was a serious success. He emphasized the complexity of such operations as deep waters impose strict requirements for the robot’s hull strength, engines power and connection cable.Cables for Moby Dick are produced by a Russian company, however, the submersible’s manufacturers refused to mention its name.
According to the Moby Dick’s designer, the project is the most compact and cheap underwater robot in its class. Moby Dick weights about 15 kg. American and Japanese bathyscaphs that reached 10-km depths of the Mariana Trench are massively larger.
The underwater robotics laboratory was established in 2000. The company has produced about half-dozen submersibles for Russian and foreign customers.