1. Human-powered submarine gets 3M treatment
3M Transportation

 

  • share

    Human-powered submarine gets 3M treatment

    June 07, 2017
    share
    Background Background Background

    Human-powered submarine gets 3M treatment

    A human-powered submarine built by students at the University of Warwick is set to compete in the International Submarine Races in Washington DC from 25-30 June.

    Human-powered submarine gets 3M treatment

    A human-powered submarine built by students at the University of Warwick is set to compete in the International Submarine Races in Washington DC from 25-30 June.

    Human-powered submarine gets 3M treatment

    A human-powered submarine built by students at the University of Warwick is set to compete in the International Submarine Races in Washington DC from 25-30 June.

    • The WarwickSub team of engineering undergraduates tasked 3M with boosting HPS-Godiva 3’s chances in the competition and making it the best-looking contender.

      To this end, the submarine’s 2.8-metre-long hull spent two weeks at 3M’s state-of-the-art Automotive Refinish Centre in Atherstone, Warwickshire, in May.

      3M engineering technician, Clive Cooch, and 3M applications engineer, James Cavalot, dedicated their full attention to the submarine during its stay, working on the project full-time.

      They began by filling in small holes in the bodywork using the 3M Dynamic Mixing System to give a high-quality finish. Next, Clive and James smoothed down the surfaces using 3M™ Cubitron II™ abrasives that feature precision-shaped grains, helping them to slice cleaner and faster.

      Using the 3M™ PPS™ Paint Preparation System, the pair then applied an undercoat of primer and used 3M abrasives to remove any final imperfections before spraying the hull in dazzling blue and orange paint.

      To achieve the ultimate finish, Clive and James polished the vessel using products from the 3M™ Perfect-It™ Finishing Materials range.

      The recycled carbon fibre hull itself was made using a resin incorporating 3M glass bubbles to create maximum buoyancy and reduce the weight of the submarine and 3M™ Scotch-Weld™ EPX Adhesive DP490 was used to glue aluminium mounting plates, which will hold some internal components, onto the hull.

      3M also provided the team with personal protective equipment to use throughout the project, including respirators, safety eyewear, coveralls and ear plugs.

      James said: “3M experts are always looking for the next challenge, so when the WarwickSub team approached us with this unusual and exciting project we couldn’t wait to get involved. We love putting our expertise, skills and products to the test.

      “The students have come up with some really innovative solutions of their own, so we hope that our input will help them blow the competition out of the water.”

      Michael Andronicou, WarwickSub business development manager, added: “3M is one of our key sponsors and its support has been pivotal to this project. We’re incredibly lucky to have 3M’s enormous range of products at our disposal and the vast expertise of the team at Atherstone has been just as vital.

      “Every time we’ve asked for help with a particular technical problem, it’s turned out that 3M has a product tailor-made for exactly the issue we’ve been struggling with, along with all the know-how.

      “Thanks to 3M, Godiva 3 is definitely going to be the best looking submarine on the grid and we’re confident we’ll be a strong contender in the competition, too.”

      Last year’s WarwickSub team – also sponsored by 3M – won the Best Design Report award at the European International Submarine Races, held in Gosport.

      This year, the team’s single-person, pedal-powered submarine will compete in a 100-metre straight-line race, travelling at a depth of between five and 10 metres, while also being judged on a range of design factors.



      Find out more about 3M