Cyclops class submersibles are equipped with an integrated launch and recovery platform. Operated similarly to a ship dry dock, the platform is ideally suited to launching and recovering manned submersibles and shock sensitive equipment such as environmental sensors or electronic data collection devices. During operations, the entire integrated dive unit is submerged by flooding platform ballast tanks with water for a controlled descent to depths of 5 to 10 meters to avoid any surface turbulence. Once submerged below the effects of surface waves, the platform remains coupled to surface floatation with a patented system to provide a stable underwater platform from which manned submersibles such as Cyclops and Titan can lift off of and then return to after each dive. At the conclusion of the dive, the submersible lands on the submerged platform and the entire system is brought to the surface in approximately two minutes by filling the ballast tanks with air.
The platform designed by OceanGate used learnings from a prototype developed in conjunction with the University of Washington Applied Physics Laboratory. After several years of testing, OceanGate employed Everest Marine to construct a custom aluminum platform specifically for Cyclops class submersibles.
At the conclusion of a dive, the pilot docks the sub on the submerged platform, guided into position by integrated landing provisions. Once in position, the locking mechanism is engaged to secure the submersible on the platform. This can all be done without scuba divers. Once secured, an OceanGate custom valve is used to transfer air from the low-pressure air tanks to the ballast compartments to push the water out and bring the platform and submersible to the surface.
The integrated dive platform provides a lifting capacity of 20,000 lbs. The vessel is 35 feet long, 15 feet wide, and draws 2 feet when fully loaded.
Conduct continuous and extensive site surveys to inspect underwater infrastructure, wrecks or sensitive environmental habitats without resurfacing.
Collect research data in real-time with first-hand views, onboard collaboration and the flexibility to modify your mission profile while still on site.
The ultimate stage to film the treasures of the deep in a highly adaptive vessel designed to illuminate the depths, capture vibrant images and document natural habitat.
A unique underwater testing platform to conduct a wide array of experiments to test equipment or expedite sensitive research in deep ocean environments.