China unveils world’s first commercial deep-sea robot

By Liu Caiyu Source:Global Times Published: 2018/7/18 22:18:39

China's rolling-stock manufacturer CRRC unveiled a new type of remotely operated vehicle (ROV) on Tuesday, capable of carrying four tons underwater.

The submersible has the largest propulsion capability in the world at 250 horsepower, equivalent to that of the BMW X6.

The ROV is small, only weighing five tons, but it can load objects as heavy as four tons in deep-sea missions, such as wreckage removal and emergency rescue, up to a depth of 3,000 meters.

It is the first product from Soil Machine Dynamics (SMD) Shanghai, a subsidiary of Zhuzhou CRRC Times Electric Co Ltd, since SMD was taken over in 2015, news site reported.

Compared with other similar devices, it can be operated in real-time with a visibility ranging from one to three meters while carrying out underwater missions. The submersible can also locate and detect subjects with sonar technology, according to Yan Yun, the vice general manager of SMD Shanghai.

Its operation accuracy can reach a few millimeters, making it capable of picking up a needle in the sea, according to Yan.

Unlike the well-known manned submersible Jiaolong, which was only an observation device for scientific research, the ROV will facilitate underwater salvage, rescue and deep-sea mining with more accuracy, Song Zhongping, a military expert and TV commentator, told the Global Times on Wednesday.

Since China lags behind in the development of underwater submersibles for deep-sea operations, the ROV developed by SMD Shanghai fills this gap, Song said.

The submersible, the world's first commercial deep-sea robot, will be mass produced in the future, reported Tuesday, citing Chen Jian, the head of SMD Shanghai.


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