Thursday, October 06, 2005

Auto Airbag Torpedo Launcher

The technology employed in auto airbags is stable, reliable and cost effective so why not use it to launch a torpedo.

Sea Corp. a local company here in Rhode Island has developed and tested such a system in the past year. In the spring of 2004 the company tested such a system aboard the Martha’s Vineyard High Speed Ferry. During the five day test 31 launches were made of torpedo and countermeasure shapes at speeds up to 35 knots. Here’s a link to their R&D page describing their Advanced Surface Launcher (ASL) system’s development. Also on the page there is a streaming video of one of their test launches (Link here – warning loads slow about a minute with broadband).

When I watched the streaming video a few thoughts came to mind.

One was obviously that the system may be employed on the Navy’s new LCS (Fast Ferry ;-) class of ships under development. A second would be a possible method for celebrities to take out those annoying Paparazzi on their way to "The Vineyard". Lastly, the locals may need to take down a number of environmentally unfriendly structures proposed for Nantucket Sound that they seem to have a problem with.

1 comment:

Vigilis said...

Surface launch, not a problem. Air bags are filled with nitrogen gas generated by highly toxic sodium azide. While the sodium azide is fully consumed, bag deflation still releases irritants, including sodium hydroxide, not suitable for closed atmospheres.