As we March into production mode we've been receiving our components by post and we're excited to finally be off the drawing board and on the workshop floors. Also, in this newsletter, we've featured the Stability & Control department of WASUB VIII.
We've made some changes to the hull design as you all would have known- we initially decided to race the submarine using a 3D printed hull but as an 'insurance policy' we've decided to create a carbon fiber hull too. We will be testing both of them and comparing their performances to motivate our future decisions later on during the testing phase. Which one do you think will perform better in the water? Tell us on our Facebook page & we'll get back to you after we've completed testing to tell you if you we're right!
Featured: Stability & Controls team
The Stability & Control department of WASUB have been working all round to develop a novel method to stabilise the submarine during the race this year. They've developed an automatic stabilising system that counters pitch and roll motions. How do they do this you ask? Well, a set of gyroscopes, pressure & speed sensors feed in information to a micro-controller which gauges the orientation of the submarine- any deviations from the desired orientation is corrected using signals sent to servo motors that control the aft horizontal fins. All of these components have to be shielded from the water (water and electronics don't work together very well!).The team have developed a custom housing and cabling to ensure that everything stays dry upto a depth of 10 meters.
The department is also responsible for ensuring the static stability of the vessel. Since we don't want the submarine to float or sink wildly- they've used the help of SolidWorks to develop a computer model of the submarine to tune it such that it reaches close to a state of neutral buoyancy. Good static stability will ensure that we don't have to rely too much on the automatic stabilisation system (which can increase drag if we have to make too many corrections). Since we're aware that computer models and final products are never going to be the same- we have some lead weights & foam to act as ballast & buoyancy elements if required.
The work produced by the Stability & Controls department will definitely make the pilots' time on board enjoyable but more importantly, safe!
Hope you enjoyed our newsletter! In the next one- we'll offer a glimpse into the various parts that we've received to begin assembly & the hullform development.