New sub­mersible to be used to ex­plore South China Sea: ex­pert

Global Times US Edition - - TOPNEWS - By Li Ruo­han

China’s new manned sub­mersible Shen­hai Yong­shi, or “deep sea war­rior,” will be used to ex­plore the bi­o­log­i­cal re­sources and ge­o­log­i­cal con­di­tions in the South China Sea, a Chi­nese ex­pert said Tues­day.

The sub­mersible has passed a state safety test and is pre­par­ing for com­mis­sion­ing, the Xin­hua News Agency re­ported Tues­day.

“Shen­hai Yong­shi will be used in the South China Sea and help ex­plore the bi­o­log­i­cal and min­eral re­sources in the deep sea,” Chen Xiang­miao, a re­search fel­low at the National In­sti­tute for the South China Sea, told the Global Times on Tues­day.

As deep sea ex­plo­ration of the re­gion be­gins, the sub­mersible will also help iden­tify the ge­o­log­i­cal con­di­tions, Chen said, adding that the ex­plo­rations will be smooth as the sub­mersible has al­ready been tested in the South China Sea and is there­fore fa­mil­iar with its cli­mate and ocean cur­rents.

In Oc­to­ber, the sub­mersible, loaded on the Tan­suo-1, fin­ished its first deep sea test­ing mis­sion in the South China Sea, and the manned sub­mersible reached a depth of 4,500 me­ters to test its func­tions and per­for­mance dur­ing an over 50-day ex­pe­di­tion, Xin­hua re­ported.

Tang Leip­ing, se­nior en­gi­neer at the Shang­hai Branch of the China Clas­si­fi­ca­tion So­ci­ety (CCS), told the Xin­hua News Agency on Mon­day that no safety risks were found in the sub­mersible’s parts or com­po­nents.

“The CCS safety ap­proval will al­low the ma­chine to be in­sured, take part in international ac­tiv­i­ties and sci­en­tific ex­plo­ration,” he said.

Tang said the sub­mersible will com­plete an an­nual safety test af­ter it is put into ser­vice.

The de­vel­op­ment of the sub­mersible took eight years and in­volved more than 90 Chi­nese or­ga­ni­za­tions and com­pa­nies. Cur­rently in ser­vice is China’s manned sub­mersible Jiao­long, which set a record by div­ing 7,062 me­ters in the Mar­i­ana Trench in June 2012.

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