digest | Ship without Sailors: the world’s first robotic vessel

Source: Kurzweil


— the story —

China has built + tested the world’s first robotic, partially submersible boat equipped with a system for launching sounding rockets — a technology used by meteorologists to better understand the atmosphere over our planet’s oceans.

The tests were conducted in years 2016 and 2017 — but China held-back the story until 2019.

Weather researchers struggle to study 3/4 of Earth’s atmosphere located over the oceans. They must travel by airplane or ships, deep into aquatic environments that are difficult to access.


atmosphere Traditionally, it’s been difficult to study the three-quarters of the Earth’s atmosphere that is found over water, because scientists have needed to do so from planes or ships, both of which make for expensive expeditions. These endeavours are also usually more vulnerable to inclement weather compared to land-based observations.

That’s where China’s new boat comes in. Officially classified as an “unmanned semisubmersible vehicle,” the new ship is designed to sail into bad weather, deploy a sounding rocket, and gather crucial data about the atmosphere and ocean.

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— notes —

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story title:
year: 2019
section: digtest

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