India is now set to launch ‘Samudrayaan’ – involving its first manned submersible called ‘Matsya-6000’, which will descend 6,000 metres into the Bay of Bengal with a three-man crew.
- Matsya-6000 is a manned submersible vehicledeveloped by the National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT), Chennai.
- It was developed under the Samudrayaan mission to facilitate humans in the deep ocean in exploring mineral resources.
- It would make India only one among six countries(US, Russia, Japan, France, and China) to have piloted a crewed under-sea expedition beyond 5,000 metres.
- It will look at chemosynthetic biodiversity in hydrothermal vents and low-temperature methane seeps in the ocean.
- It will also promote tourism and ocean literacy.
- It is designed with the capability of operating in the deep sea for 12 hours, while in case of emergency, it can also operate up to 96 hours with all the necessary measures for human safety.
- Made of 80mm-thick titanium alloy, it will be able to withstand a pressure 600 times greater than that at sea level.
- It relies only on gravity, water, and lithium-ion batteries for power.
- It will also feature the ultra-short baseline acoustic positioning system (USBL).
- This will allow the mothership carrying the transponder to send information and the submersible to respond, which will then let the mothership know where the submersible is.
- This is a flotation device that will rise to the top of the ocean thus helping to find the submersible even in case it cannot resurface.