EGO: The Easy-to-Use Semi Submarine
South Korean company Raonhaje has created a compact submarine that it claims can be operated with minimal training.
The electric-powered submersible – called EGO – is controlled by a simple foot accelerator pedal, a steering wheel and a switch for moving backwards and forwards. Boats are typically operated by more complex throttle-levers.
Two floating hulls remain on the surface whilst a connected cabin sits below the waterline. The underwater compartment can be entered via a trapdoor and ladder on the vehicle's topside.
An LCD monitor in the cabin is linked to a high resolution camera on top of the vehicle, enabling passengers to see the view above the ocean.
The submersible can each a speed of 5 knots (5.7 mph), and can run for 6-10 hours on a single battery charge.
Its windows are made of special acrylic materials, typically used in aquariums to withstand water pressure and enable light transmission for better visibility.
The EGO, which made its debut at the Miami boat show in mid-February, is available in a range of colours, including French Rose, Lime Green and pink.
It will be available to buy from October 2011. Raonhaje are also currently working on a four-seater version.