More Flying Subs


I can’t decide whether I’d rather have a flying car or a flying submarine. Both seem right up my alley. Last week’s New Scientist has another article about progress toward a flying sub. (I know I’ve written about this before, but I can’t find my own post on the subject!) Some of the possibilities being considered: use of jet turbines both for air and underwater propulsion (the underwater use being powered by electric motors, rather than jet combustion), the use of air/hydrofoils for both flight and forced submersion. Of course, the work at this point is being pursued on behalf of the military, but I’m rooting for a civilian version, too. I’d link to the article, but most of it is behind a paywall for subscribers, unfortunately. 

All this puts me in mind of Tom Swift, Jr.’s diving seacopter, from the juvenile novel of 1956. That handy invention used an atomic-powered central rotor in the middle of a flying saucer. To fly, it spun to force air downward. To submerge, it reversed to force water upward. I wonder if the folks at DARPA have given any thought to hiring Tom. Here’s what the Ocean Arrow looked like…

Post your comment before you lose your train of thought. (Mine already left the station.)