4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

UCSD human submarine off to England

Students will try Vaquita in La Jolla Shores before leaving

For the first time in UCSD history the human-powered sub team will compete internationally
For the first time in UCSD history the human-powered sub team will compete internationally

For the first time in UC San Diego history, the school’s human-powered submarine team has been invited to participate in the European International Sub Race. In July 2018, the team of engineering undergrads will fly across the pond with their submersible, named Vaquita for its dolphin-inspired propulsion fin. The vaquita is a critically endangered species of dolphin native to Baja California waters.

Powered by a person pedaling frantically and sucking on a SCUBA tank

In years past, UC San Diego’s human-powered subs have only competed stateside. The biennial European international races host 12 university teams at the Ocean Basin Testing pool in Gosport, England. The pool—as long as a football field—belongs to QinetiQ, a British multinational defense technology company. It’s where they test scale models of aircraft carriers for the Royal Navy.

Different from stateside competition, the international race requires the subs to negotiate tight turns in an underwater slalom. With this added challenge, the engineering students chose to make a major innovation to this year’s sub: electronic steering. The team tested Vaquita’s seaworthiness—including function of the dead man buoy—in Canyonview Pool on campus. They plan to submerge it in salt water at La Jolla Shores before leaving for England.

“They used corrosion resistant materials,” insisted two students from last year’s team.

Powered by a pilot pedaling frantically, looking through a transparent nose cone and sucking on a SCUBA tank, the submarine generates motion with a drivetrain that moves the dolphin tail. Initially a joystick controlled the electronic steering system, but later the team added sensors for convenience. The steering moves fins on the top, bottom, and sides.

Vaquita boasts a paint job by UC San Diego artist Rubén Ortiz-Torres. The fins were 3D printed from polylactic acid plastic. Local company OceanAero donated carbon fiber for the vessel’s body, along with a lesson for the young students on the process of vacuum assisted resin infusion.

Though the hull of the submersible isn’t watertight, and the design doesn’t contribute anything new to waterproofing research—that’s not the point of this engineering exercise. The idea is to test the problem-solving abilities of the young engineers.

Grand total for the project was $11,600. The team was invited to the races on June 2nd, so they are currently raising funds to ship the sub to England. Check out a video of the build process at https://www.gofundme.com/ucsdhps

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

The USS Midway’s stalwarts

It’s impossible not to think of Tom Brokaw’s phrase “Greatest generation” when you listen to the man talk.
Next Article

La Jolla Symphony's amateurs reach high

June performance of Mahler's Resurrection may be our only chance to hear it live
For the first time in UCSD history the human-powered sub team will compete internationally
For the first time in UCSD history the human-powered sub team will compete internationally

For the first time in UC San Diego history, the school’s human-powered submarine team has been invited to participate in the European International Sub Race. In July 2018, the team of engineering undergrads will fly across the pond with their submersible, named Vaquita for its dolphin-inspired propulsion fin. The vaquita is a critically endangered species of dolphin native to Baja California waters.

Powered by a person pedaling frantically and sucking on a SCUBA tank

In years past, UC San Diego’s human-powered subs have only competed stateside. The biennial European international races host 12 university teams at the Ocean Basin Testing pool in Gosport, England. The pool—as long as a football field—belongs to QinetiQ, a British multinational defense technology company. It’s where they test scale models of aircraft carriers for the Royal Navy.

Different from stateside competition, the international race requires the subs to negotiate tight turns in an underwater slalom. With this added challenge, the engineering students chose to make a major innovation to this year’s sub: electronic steering. The team tested Vaquita’s seaworthiness—including function of the dead man buoy—in Canyonview Pool on campus. They plan to submerge it in salt water at La Jolla Shores before leaving for England.

“They used corrosion resistant materials,” insisted two students from last year’s team.

Powered by a pilot pedaling frantically, looking through a transparent nose cone and sucking on a SCUBA tank, the submarine generates motion with a drivetrain that moves the dolphin tail. Initially a joystick controlled the electronic steering system, but later the team added sensors for convenience. The steering moves fins on the top, bottom, and sides.

Vaquita boasts a paint job by UC San Diego artist Rubén Ortiz-Torres. The fins were 3D printed from polylactic acid plastic. Local company OceanAero donated carbon fiber for the vessel’s body, along with a lesson for the young students on the process of vacuum assisted resin infusion.

Though the hull of the submersible isn’t watertight, and the design doesn’t contribute anything new to waterproofing research—that’s not the point of this engineering exercise. The idea is to test the problem-solving abilities of the young engineers.

Grand total for the project was $11,600. The team was invited to the races on June 2nd, so they are currently raising funds to ship the sub to England. Check out a video of the build process at https://www.gofundme.com/ucsdhps

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Steph Richards’ super scents make Supersense

“Listen to the music and let the smells wash over you.”
Next Article

La Jolla Symphony's amateurs reach high

June performance of Mahler's Resurrection may be our only chance to hear it live
Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Art Reviews — W.S. Di Piero's eye on exhibits Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Best Buys — San Diego shopping Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits City Lights — News and politics Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Famous Former Neighbors — Next-door celebs Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Here's the Deal — Chad Deal's watering holes Just Announced — The scoop on shows Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Of Note — Concert picks Out & About — What's Happening Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Pour Over — Grab a cup Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Set 'em Up Joe — Bartenders' drink recipes Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Sports — Athletics without gush Street Style — San Diego streets have style Suit Up — Fashion tips for dudes Theater Reviews — Local productions Theater antireviews — Narrow your search Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Waterfront — All things ocean Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close