|Earth Pre-Federation Database - Deep Flight I|
|Crew||One person, prone position|
|Life Support||18 Hours|
|Flight Endurance||1-4 Hours|
|Operational Depth||3,300 fsw|
|Speed||Max: 12 knots (estimated)Cruise: 4-8 knots Minimum: 2 knots|
|Ascent Rate||650 feet/minute|
|Descent Rate||480 feet/minute|
|Attitude / Roll Range||Through 360 degrees|
|Deep Flight I (DF I) is the prototype first stage in an attempt to navigate to the deepest reaches of the ocean and represents a radical
new design approach for underwater vehicles. Instead of using a traditional ballast system to control dive and ascent, DF I uses stubby inverted wings to provide
"negative" lift that pulls the small sub down. This downward force negates the slightly buoyant characteristics of the sub. At cruising speeds the sub is neutrally buoyant
and depends on its thrusters to drive the sub up or down, the same principle used in airplanes. While traditional ballast systems emulate airships and HOT air balloons,
this principle, along with DF I's small size, allows the pilot to descend at a very fast rate to maximize bottom time. Since the overall aim is to get to 37,000 ft, it is
critical to get to the bottom as quickly as possible to ensure the longest exploration time
DF I serves as the technology bridge to the next generation of deep ocean work craft, Deep Flight II. Sponsored in part by Television New Zealand, IMAX, National Geographic Television and Rolex, DFI was launched in September 1996 from the Monterey Bay Aquarium in Monterey, California. Deep Flight has been featured in many primetime television programs, including Dateline NBC and National Geographic Explorer.
The H.O.T. design team, with help from a team of volunteers, custom built all the composites on DF I, including the main pressure hull. The electronics and circuit boards were custom designed and built in-house. Mechanical machined parts were out-sourced to local machine shops through detailed production-quality prints.
The subs have control circuits for up to four cameras. The standard fit for television is digital 3-chip video photography; or highdefinition (hdtv) for film projects, there are top and bottom external mounting hard points which can carry cameras up to and including 70 mm large format (IMAX).
The standard suite of lights includes 4 wing-mounted and 2 pod-mounted high intensity (forward and downward) lights. Externally mounted HMI lights can be fitted as needed.
Text and Pictures from Deep Flight
A Deep Flight I seen in the Enterprise Opening Credits