Italian Firm Building Submersible Hydrofoil
Italian startup iSpace2o, backed by an Invitalia loan, has announced it is starting fabrication on the first hull for its Deepseaker DS1 submersible hydrofoil.
The high-tech machine will rise out of the water to hydrofoil at speeds up to 26 mph (23 knots) or dive as deep as 164’ (50 m) underwater.
First of its Kind Vessel
The company claims it’s the first vessel of its kind, saying there is no other fast boat that can also dive. Deepseeker DS1 is also fully electric, powered by quiet “Deepspeed” jets, designed and built by Sealence.
Electric boats tend to suffer from severe range restriction, but foiling speed will lift its hull out of the water, reducing drag and boosting effective range.
iSpace2o hasn’t yet specified battery size or range estimates, but notes that it’s considering a longer-range alternative hydrogen powertrain.
Another key innovation, says the company, comes via a partnership with Like-A-Fish, which will supply the Deepseaker with “almost unlimited oxygen” for the DS1’s four-person cabin.
This technology uses an electric centrifuge to place seawater under low pressure, leaching out dissolved oxygen to feed back into the sub’s breathing system. Consuming about 150 watts of power per person, this device had allegedly been prototyped up to a certain point some 12 years ago.
iSpace2o promises “Tesla-style” artificial intelligence navigation, inflatable airbags to bring the craft to the surface in an emergency, an AR-inspired heads-up display, built-in GoPro cameras, hydrophones for underwater audio and a double-shell structure that can keep the cabin protected even when a collision compromises the exterior.