Diver propulsion vehicle


Diver propulsion vehicle
Diver using a DPV for underwater propulsion
Two U.S. Marines of the MSPF operating a Diver Propulsion Device (DPD) - Manufactured by STIDD Systems.

A diver propulsion vehicle (DPV, also known as an underwater propulsion vehicle or underwater scooter) is an item of diving equipment used by scuba and rebreather divers to increase range underwater. Range is restricted by the amount of breathing gas that can be carried, the rate at which that breathing gas is consumed under exertion, and the time limits imposed by the dive tables to avoid decompression sickness. DPV's can have military application; an example is the Diver Propulsion Device (DPD) from STIDD Systems in the US.[1]

A DPV usually consists of a battery-powered electric motor, which drives a propeller. The design must ensure that: the propeller is caged so that it cannot harm the diver, diving equipment or marine life; the vehicle cannot be accidentally started or run away from the diver; and it remains neutrally buoyant under all conditions.

DPVs are useful for long journeys at constant depth where navigation is easy. Typical uses include cave diving and technical diving where the vehicles help move bulky equipment and make better use of the limited underwater time imposed by the decompression requirements of deep diving.

For many recreational divers DPVs are not useful. Buoyancy control is vital for diver safety: The DPV has the potential to make buoyancy control difficult and cause barotrauma if the diver ascends or descends under power. Visibility of less than 5 metres makes navigating a DPV difficult. Also, many forms of smaller marine life are very well camouflaged or hide well and are only seen by divers who move very slowly and are very vigilant.

Contents

Types

Frogman with a Russian IDA71 rebreather, riding a Protei 5, carrying a Russian APS Underwater Assault Rifle.

Manta-boards

This is an unpowered piece of board (usually square) with two long ropes attached. It is towed by a surface boat. A diver holds onto it and keeps it submerged by holding it at the correct angle like an upside-down aerofoil. It is named after the manta ray fish.

Diver-tugs, tow-behind, scooters

The most common sort of DPV is where a diver is towed behind it holding onto one of its two handles on its stern or bow. These types of scooters are efficient because the divers ride in the slipstream of the scooter as opposed to a "ride-on-top" which must be ridden and increases drag, which affects scooter battery burn time. Even more efficient are the tow-behind scooters where the diver wears a harness and backplate or BC with a front crotch-strap D-ring and the scooter is clipped by a bolt snap and tow leash with proper length. This way the diver rides above the slipstream of the scooter while remaining horizontal, thereby minimizing the energy used to move water (bollard pull).

Manned torpedoes and similar

These are roughly torpedo-shaped or fish-shaped vehicles that one or more divers (often two) ride. Sometimes they sit astride it. Sometimes it has hollows in its top and the divers sit inside them. One well-known type is the manned torpedo or "chariot" which commando frogmen used in World War II. Similar vehicles have been made for work divers or sport divers; as these do not have a warhead, their bow tends to be pointed for better streamlining. One example is the Dolphin which was made on the Isle of Wight (UK) in the 1970s.

Subskimmers

A subskimmer is a sort of Rigid-hulled inflatable boat (RIB). It is equipped to inflate and deflate itself. When submerged it seals its motor and runs with battery-electric thrusters. Thus it transforms between a fast, light, surface boat and a submerged diver-rider. There are these makes:

  • Subskimmer. This project was started in the 1970s by Submarine Products Ltd. of Hexham in Northumberland, England and passed through various hands. Its thrusters are on a rotatable cross-arm. "Subskimmer" is a tradename owned by Alphachamp.
  • Infernus. Infernus is smaller than Subskimmer. They use the word "subskimmer" as a generic term.

Torpedo-shaped with handles near its front end

Some Farallon and Aquazepp scooters have this arrangement and have a raised arm at the rear to support the diver's crotch against the water current.

Miscellaneous

  • The first commercially available DPV was the Aquazepp built by Josef Rupprecht in Munich. Aquazepps remain popular with cave and technical divers who appreciate the robust build quality and flexibility in customisation of the machines.[citation needed]
  • There are DPVs where the diver is held on in some other way. One example is the Protei-5 Russian diver-rider where the diver is clamped on top of it; there is a similar Russian DPV called Proton.
  • There is a DPV called Proteus made in New Zealand that is strapped onto the diver's cylinder.

Wet subs

As DPVs get bigger, they gradually merge into submarines. A wet sub can be classed as a small submarine where the pilot's seat is naturally flooded and they must wear diving gear. Covert military operations use swimmer delivery vehicles (SDVs) to deliver and retrieve operators into harbors and near-shore undetected. An example is the Multi-Role Combatant Craft (MRCC) produced by STIDD Systems in the US.[1]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "STIDD Military Submersibles". http://www.stiddmil.com. Retrieved 21 September 2010. 

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Diver Propulsion Vehicle — A Diver Propulsion Vehicle or a DPV is an item of diving equipment used by scuba divers to increase their range while underwater where their endurance is restricted due to limited availability of breathing gas and need to avoid decompression… …   Wikipedia

  • Protei-5 Russian diver propulsion vehicle — The Protei 5 (Протей 5) is a small Russian one man diver carrying vehicle often used by Russian commando frogmen. It is battery electric powered, using six non sealed lead acid batteries [ [http://www.nobubblediving.com/protei.htm Diver Dave s… …   Wikipedia

  • Véhicule de propulsion sous-marine — Un véhicule de propulsion sous marine (en anglais Diver Propulsion Vehicle DPV, parfois appelé scooter ) est un équipement sous marin utilisé pendant la plongée afin de faciliter l exploration sous marine en augmentant le rayon d action de celle… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Remotely operated underwater vehicle — Remotely operated vehicle redirects here. For vehicles operating out of water, see remote control vehicle. ROV at work in an underwater oil and gas field. The ROV is operating a subsea torque tool (wrench) on a valve on the subsea structure. A… …   Wikipedia

  • Wreck diving — Diver at the wreck of the Hilma Hooker, Netherlands Antilles. Wreck diving is a type of recreational diving where shipwrecks are explored. Although most wreck dive sites are at shipwrecks, there is an increasing trend to scuttle retired ships to… …   Wikipedia

  • Anti-frogman techniques — are security methods developed to protect watercraft, ports and installations, and other sensitive resources both in or nearby vulnerable waterways from potential threats or intrusions by frogmen or other divers.Risks and threats to be defended… …   Wikipedia

  • Diving equipment — Surface supplied commercial diving equipment on display at a trade show Diving equipment is equipment used by underwater divers for the purpose of facilitating diving activities. This may be equipment primarily intended for this purpose, or… …   Wikipedia

  • Scuba diving — Not to be confused with Self contained breathing apparatus, which describes breathing sets used out of water. Scuba diver Scuba diving ( SCUBA originally being an acronym for self contained underwater breathing apparatus, now widely considered a… …   Wikipedia

  • Emergency First Response — Logo von PADI Professional Association of Diving Instructors (kurz: PADI) ist ein im Jahr 1966[1] von John Cronin und Ralph Erikson gegründeter amerikanischer Tauchsportverband, der weltweit Tauchausbildungen anbietet. Mit rund 5.300 Tauchbasen… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Professional Association of Diving Instructors — Logo von PADI Professional Association of Diving Instructors (kurz: PADI) ist ein im Jahr 1966[1] von John Cronin und Ralph Erikson gegründetes amerikanisches Wirtschaftsunternehmen, das weltweit Tauchausbildungen anbietet. Mit rund 5.300… …   Deutsch Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.