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PLA Navy Looks to Unmanned Vehicles to Carry ASW Sensors

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PLA Navy Eyes China’s Deep-Sea Underwater Glider After Successful Test Shows It Rivals US Vessel (excerpt)

(Source: South China Morning Post; published Sept 01, 2016)

Chinese researchers have just carried out the first test of what they believe will be the world’s deepest-reaching underwater glider – challenging the record held by a vessel now in use by the US Navy.

The Haiyi-7000 – carried onboard the maiden voyage of China’s submersible mother ship, Tansuo-1 – was deployed above the Mariana Trench, in the western Pacific, an ocean trench with the greatest known ocean depth of 11,034 metres from late June to early August.

It was able to glide down to a depth of 5,751 metres and its progress has greatly interested the People’s Liberation Army Navy.

“We could have gone deeper, but we did not want to push it to the limit too early,” said Professor Yu Jiancheng, the lead scientist of the Haiyi project, in an exclusive interview with the South China Morning Post.

Up for the challenge? China to journey to the Mariana Trench

The present record depth for underwater gliding is 6,000 metres, set by the vessel Seaglider, developed by researchers at the University of Washington.

Scarlet, another submersible glider developed at Rutgers University, in the United States, made history as the first robot to swim across the Atlantic Ocean in 2009. Both gliders were now being used by the US Navy.

The birth of China’s Haiyi was partly the result of “help” from the US, said Yu, an underwater robotic researcher at the Shenyang Institute of Automation, at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Liaoning province. (end of excerpt)

Click here for the full story, on the SCMP website.