Nuclear submarine Nautilus
The Nautilus is the first nuclear submarine in the world. It was built in 1954, in Groton, Connecticut, on the east coast of the US. Thanks to the use of nuclear energy have managed to overcome all records of submarine technology to date. Available higher speed and not so often needed up to the surface. It was the first submarine to reach the North Pole in 1958. In 1980 became a Museum.
The nuclear submarine Nautilus, a technological novelty
So far, the underwater electric power generated by diesel engines. This energy could be stored in batteries for later use electric motors to power once submerged. As diesel engines need oxygen for the combustion of fuel forced the submarine to surface periodically. In wartime this meant a great disadvantage because on the surface are highly vulnerable submarines and engines produce a lot of noise making them easily detectable.
Origins of the nuclear submarine Nautilus
Hyman Rickover was a young captain in the US Navy. He studied nuclear physics and motivated by his compatriot Philip Albelson realized the potential that could be nuclear energy to power a nuclear submarine with a small nuclear reactor. Initially he did not have the support of their superiors saw that the existing nuclear reactors occupied a few acres on the ground can not see him inside a submarine. However, Rickover succeeded in becoming the head of the Nuclear Energy Division of the Office of Navy ships and -at the same time- branch chief of naval reactors at the Atomic Energy Commission.
These positions allowed him to launch his project and in January 1954 the first nuclear submarine in the world was built. They called & ldquo; & rdquo Nautilus; as a tribute to Jules Verne, the author of & ldquo; 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea & rdquo ;. A year later, with the hull number SSN-571 painted white, she was launched and sailed for the first time.
Characteristics of the nuclear submarine Nautilus
The nuclear submarine Nautilus is driven by a pressurized water reactor manufactured by Westinghouse Electric Corporation. The Nautilus is about 97.5 meters long, 8.5 meters wide and 7.9 meters deep. It is equipped with six torpedo tubes, weighs more than 3,000 tons. When it was operating, normal crew consisted of 13 officers and 92 crew members.
On January 20, 1955 the nuclear submarine Nautilus out to sea. And in 1957 gets its first major achievement: living up to its name, the nuclear submarine Nautilus get to travel submerged 60,000 nautical miles, a distance equal to 20,000 miles (or 111,100 kilometers) from the title of the famous novel by Jules Verne Nautilus
The next major goal of nuclear submarine Nautilus was called Operation Sunshine in which he intended to cross under the ice that float over the North Pole.
The submarine sailed from Pearl Harbor toward the Polo With 116 men on board (including four scientists specially chosen for this trip) and commanded by William Anderson. The nuclear submarine Nautilus travel more than 1,600 kilometers below the Arctic ice to reach the North Pole. After crossing the Bering Strait, the submarine dived to 150 meters and started sailing under a layer of 3 to 15 meters of solid ice until he crossed the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean.
Strategically very important for the US because for the first time crossed the Atlantic by a different route to the Panama Canal or around Cape Horn. The construction of the nuclear submarine Nautilus made it possible that you could use the route from the Bering Strait to Greenland under the ice.
Of course, a few years later the Russians develop their own nuclear submarines and the balance of the Cold War would be balanced, forcing both sides to continue developing new technologies.
The nuclear submarine Nautilus was in service for 25 years. Then it became a museum moored at Naval Submarine Base New London in the city of Groton (Connecticut), and receives over 250,000 visitors each year.