For further information,
please contact:
Tony Trueman
University Press Office
44 (0)1225 384 220
44 (0)7966 341 322

» submit an item · an event

The submarine
The submarine
The submarine
The submarine

Press Release - 11 June 2007

Submarine run on pedal power is given trial run before international competition

A submarine that runs on pedal power was tested today (Monday 11 June) before it takes part in an international competition in the US later this month.

Seven undergraduates from the University of Bath’s Department of Mechanical Engineering have built the one-man submarine over the past two years as part of their degrees.

They launched the submarine at the Vobster Quay diving centre near Frome, where the designated pilot, Trevor Allen, tested it out.

The submarine is powered by Trevor’s pedalling, which works fins that move it through the water. It has compressed air cylinders to allow him to breathe and a buoyancy control to keep its depth in water.

The submarine, called, Seabomb, will compete on June 22 against other university and non-university teams at the International Submarine Races, a biennial event held at the US Naval Carderock facility in Bethesda, Maryland.

The submarine, built by the Bath University Submarine Racing Team (BURST), will be Britain’s only entry. The BURST submarine, which is about three metres long and one metre wide, cost almost £3,000 to put together. In trials it has achieved speeds of about 1.5 knots.

A total of 27 teams will take part in the US event, during which the University team will take part in the speed race over 100 metres and the slalom competition.

“We’re very pleased with the work that’s gone into this and we’re hoping it pays off in America,” said Alex Park, one of the team who built it.

The University of Bath is one of the UK's leading universities, with an international reputation for quality research and teaching. View a full list of the University's press releases: