Let me just say I'm not a /sci/ regular, but I've noticed that there are a lot of threads about Space explorations and colonization.
What about colonizing the Oceans? Whether its true underwater cities or artificial islands, wouldn't this be an easier goal for science to accomplish than say colonizing Mars or large Asteroids etc.?
Not that i'm against research on space exploration, I'm all for it, but I'd like know if there are any projects or research being done on Underwater colonization?
It's illegal to colonize Antarctica under international law, you know the ones that all countries who could actually do something like that agreed to.
It's probably easier to tow a prefab module off the coast of Florida and sink it than it is to rent an icebreaker ship to sail all necessary goods, staff, and materials to the South Pole to be honest.
Mr. Rapture might have a point.
In a lot of fields science advances faster than the laws invented to hinder them. But since people are slow to change I think this reluctance means technology will typically take a backseat to keeping things as they are.
While it'd be really cool, it's also not very fun to live there for long.
First of all there's not much to do underwater.
The only reasons I can think right now is mining and biology/geology research.
Both can be easily automated/done remotely.
On top of that, you can't actually get out.
Anything that's "really" underwater is probably below 50-100m where you simply can't go outside for a swim.
It's going to be very expensive per unit volume, thus very crowded. It's also cold, constantly corroding and consumes a lot of electricity.
There are a couple underwater research vessels, but nothing big.
A big reason why we need to colonize space is because of how much we have trashed and are trashing our own planet.
The oceans however come with a slew of other problems; the constant pressure that would be put on the colonies for one, not to mention any breach would be a death trap (I guess the same goes for a space colony unless there is some sort of teraforming on the planet), Importing/exporting would be a pain, lack of sunlight is another problem.
I'm not sure what would be the point other than maybe a small research colony under water
We had a lot of good discussion when Mad Scientist frequented /sci/. He had a hobby of building underwater habitats for his hamsters. Really funny guy. He still runs a blog if you search around.
I think there's enough out there to discuss but I dont have the knowledge to bring anything to the table.
>place nukes in your new country
>use unclear dissuasion to avoid getting attacked
>everyone sighs and pretend they didnt want a piece of antartica in frustration
yeah, the hard part is acquiring nukes and positioning them
Hi. I'm sure this won't mean much coming from a rando but this is a topic I know a lot about. It's also been a fantasy of mine for ~2 decades. I've built up exhaustive knowledge of the 70 or so habitats that have been built, the three still in operation (soon to be four) and the economic reasons why a larger long term human presence underwater (apart from nuclear submarines) hasn't happened yet but may still.
I am at your disposal, ask whatever you please.
For humans? Because no human presence is necessary for that. There's actually loads of seafloor infrastructure, unmanned, already underwater that's out of sight out of mind. Pic related, compressor junctures and transformers that typically surround an oil rig. More and more is being moved to the seafloor, the future of oil and gas extraction is purely seafloor rigs, totally automated.
Either Tektite 2 or Conshelf 2. Conshelf 3 was more spacious but utilitarian as it was funded by french petroleum interests with a view to using saturation diving habitats to facilitate deep sea oil extraction.
This was before ROVs existed and before it was worked out that they could put the habitat (a comfortable deco chamber) on the deck of a ship instead of underwater, and ferry divers to/from the work site in diving bells.
Which bring divers up sealed, still under pressure, to be carefully transferred to the deckside deco chamber by mating the bell to it, like how Orion docks to the ISS. This procedure fucked up catastrophically once, it was called the Byford Dolphin incident.
Conshelf 2 was very homey as Cousteau designed it and meant to live there himself to shoot World Without Sun. Tektite 2 was also very nicely apportioned. In the modern era, the Jules Undersea Lodge (a former research habitat turned tourist attraction) is decked out like a small apartment, dated decor but way nicer than it was when it was used as a lab. Aquarius is so-so, very sterile and utilitarian inside but then it's still used as a lab.
All that remains of it today, the hangar for the diving saucer. The windows around the top have been smashed in to ensure it stays flooded, so randos don't purge the water from it and camp out inside. Which is a shame really.
I assume you mean submersibles here not nuclear submarines
Manned submersibles are increasingly difficult to justify the cost of over an ROV when ROVs have gotten so good.
Bob Ballard has forsaken manned undersea exploration in favor of ROVs because he once found himself in a sub peering out through the tiny porthole at some black smokers while a colleague looked at them on the monitor (via the exterior camera)
When asked why he did that, he said the picture was clearer. So Ballard asked "then why are we down here?"
This is being somewhat rectified by next gen submersibles with all transparent spherical acrylic and borosilicate glass crew cabins. You can see some subs like this in James Cameron's Aliens of the Deep
But robots will win in the end, sadly. You can do more science with them for less money. The future of ROVs will be something with a pair of human like arms and hands, plus a stereo pair of cameras on a motorized turret.
You'll operate it with an oculus rift or similar HMD using either motion controllers, an upper body haptic exoskeleton or something of that nature. Once it reaches that point, justifying the added cost and danger of putting humans physically underwater to explore the ocean will become impossible.
Crying shame if you ask me. Robots should do the jobs humans don't want. Not take away the most exciting, adventurous jobs that define what it means to be human: Risking our lives to explore, with our own eyes.
Fun fact: The first all woman aquanaut crew lived aboard Tektite. The press at the time (1970s) called them aqua belles, aqua naughties and various things of that nature. Among them was Sylvia Earle, among the most accomplished aquanauts and ocean explorers of all time in terms of dive hours and overall contributions. She is fondly referred to as "Her Deepness" by those in the know.
Any sort of underwater living space will be costly, but surprisingly within reach if you make it very small.
Lloyd Godson has built a series of three modest habitats. The most recent is pictured. Don't be fooled, it is surprisingly spacious inside. But still just enough room for one person to carry out the basic functions of life.
The main limiting factor is weight. To hold a cubic foot of air underwater you need 64lbs of something. That can be lead, pig iron ingots, or even (if you're smart and have a dredge pump) sand from the bottom. This saves you the expense/work of moving lead or pig iron from where you got it to where you mean to sink the structure.
I suggest you look into his "Biosub" projects and learn what you can from his methods. There was also a set of four modest habitats established on the same site by an Italian dive club for a total cost of 1.4 million bucks in which six of them lived for two weeks (three pods, sleeping two each, plus a communal pod with shared cooking facilities)
Pressure pots. Often literally from pressure cookers. Brought down by divers, carefully equalized with ambient air pressure once inside, then opened. This is how everything from the next week's supply of CO2 absorbant powder to the live parrot was delivered to Conshelf 2 and how all supplies are transported to Aquarius today.
Inside shot of Biosub 3. Pics of the Italian diving club colony to follow
It's not much but there are multiple habs on the same site so it is appropriate to call it a colony. Surely inconvenient to have to suit up to swim between them but loads easier than designing them to be mated to one another like ISS modules. The only undersea habitat ever expanded in that way was the German Helgoland habitat, and even then the whole thing was brought to shore so the addon module could be welded on in a shipyard. Modular expansion while still submerged has, for habitats, never been done. We're still in the Skylab era of undersea habitats if that makes any sense. The only such submerged dockings that occur are between nuclear subs and emergency rescue submersibles. Even that is considered very risky and done in relatively shallow water.
This desu. Space colonization is exciting because it offers a chance to spread humanity out: something could go wrong with the Earth, but there would still be people out there to carry on our legacy. Underwater cities would be just as fragile as what we have now, if not more.
Hippies often whine about how humanity's very existence is killing the Earth etc.
Mars is sterile so every attempt we make to explore it brings life. When it comes to the sea, I can almost see where they are coming from, perhaps we should leave mother ocean alone?
Explain in detail why you think the mere presence of humans destroys the ocean, rather than investing humanity more directly into its continued wellbeing?
Keeping in mind that every structure we sink becomes an artificial reef, every vehicle is necessarily zero emission, habitats are lowered from above with minimal disruption to the environment and all waste is removed and taken to land for processing
If there's something profitable to be done in a fixed location on the sea bed over long periods that requires or can benefit from human divers, a saturation diving habitat makes sense
It removes the time limitations on bottom time due to nitrogen buildup by allowing divers to return to a living space that's at the same depth and pressure their bodies are adapted to instead of to the surface. They can also refill air tanks there.
This lets them dive as much per day as they have the physical endurance for, instead of 1-2 hours
An example of an industry that could benefit from this is offshore aquaculture, aka 'mariculture', the farming of edible sea life
We don't secrete mercury or lead. Those do not inherently follow us wherever we go. They come from industrial processes on land which would not work underwater, or be necessary to perform there.
Why would you need undersea cities for aquaculture? Why not just put the city on the surface? Why go through the enormous expense of building an underwater city when you could just build a floating one?
Where did I say anything about whole cities? I am not OP.
As for floating structures, those do not permit saturation diving.
Right now most mariculture operations are limited to just a few enclosures on the surface. Easy enough to harvest with teams of divers working out of boats.
As the enclosures are stacked vertically down into the sea, making better use of 3D space for cultivation, keeping up with maintenance and harvesting will require either more divers, or the same number working out of a saturation diving habitat which increases greatly the amount of time the divers can spend underwater per day.
I dislike open spaces. I'm not agoraphobic or anything, but small spaces feel cosier and can be far more spatially interesting ( from a fleshbag point of view ).
In the light of this I can understand why you'd want to live underwater.
and why do you need to stack them? I mean the ocean is pretty big. And do you really need divers to be down there ALL THE TIME? You don't perform maintenance all the time, you don't harvest all the time. And why isn't this something that can't be done with an ROV. Pic related is a next generation ROV that is being developed
And oh look an article on a completely unmanned aquaculture farm that uses an integrated ROV for cleaning:
>and why do you need to stack them? I mean the ocean is pretty big.
The plot of ocean that maricultural farmers can own isn't. Just because you put something in the ocean doesn't mean you suddenly own the entirety of it and can expand horizontally as far as you want. But you do own the column of seawater under that plot, down to the sea bed. Sort of like how airspace works.
>And do you really need divers to be down there ALL THE TIME?
What? No, of course you don't. I never said such a thing. I fear you did not fully read or somehow misunderstood my post. I am not proposing that anybody go to live down there permanently, for the rest of their lives. Teams of divers would go down in three week shifts, cycling out with other teams when their time is up, like oil rigs.
>And why isn't this something that can't be done with an ROV.
If you actually mean AUV, because AI isn't smart enough for this yet. If you really do mean ROV, it's because ROVs must be operated from the surface by long fiber optic tether. Sea water is opaque to radio. This means you wind up with people sitting in a ship overhead controlling the robot and, if there's more than one, probably tangling up their tethers.
I don't know how much experience you have with ROVs but they are much clumsier/less capable than you seem to believe. That's why the oil and gas industry still uses human divers.
>Pic related is a next generation ROV that is being developed
Cool CGI render. But if it's tethered, and it looks like it will have to be as it's intended for telepresence, good luck operating more than one at a time on the same site.
>And oh look an article on a completely unmanned aquaculture farm that uses an integrated ROV for cleaning:
Not for harvesting though.
The link I posted was a free floating aquaculture cage system, it drifts around like a boat. No need to own the sea floor. It's cheaper too.
>> Teams of divers would go down in three week shifts, cycling out with other teams when their time is up, like oil rigs.
you are implying that there will be people down there all the time? Not the same group of people, but a continuous underwater manned presence?
>>This means you wind up with people sitting in a ship overhead controlling the robot
This is far more practical than having people underwater all the time. Now the link I posted is interesting, in that the ROV they use for cleaning the cage can be operated from land via satellite link. Still uses a fiberoptic cable to get to the surface though.
>> if there's more than one, probably tangling up their tethers.
Oil industry has no problem operating multiple ROVs on rigs. How the fuck do you think pic related was taken?
>>I don't know how much experience you have with ROVs but they are much clumsier/less capable than you seem to believe.
The way we operate ROVs now is stupid. They're dumb master slave manipulators, most of which don't even have force feedback. This is going to change as robotic technology gets more advanced.
But the question is, do you really need something with high dexterity to be underwater all the time to operate a fish farm?
Here's more on the fish farm I posted, it's worth noting they were able to operate almost everything by remote.
>The link I posted was a free floating aquaculture cage system, it drifts around like a boat. No need to own the sea floor. It's cheaper too.
Stationary enclosures can produce their own fish food by using falling waste to fertilize beds of kelp below, which the food is then made from.
>you are implying that there will be people down there all the time? Not the same group of people, but a continuous underwater manned presence?
Yes, if the operation grows large enough.
>Oil industry has no problem operating multiple ROVs on rigs. How the fuck do you think pic related was taken?
2 ROVs is technically multiple but you can't deny it becomes a cluster fuck with much more. The ROV in the pic also can't do a whole lot.
>The way we operate ROVs now is stupid. They're dumb master slave manipulators, most of which don't even have force feedback. This is going to change as robotic technology gets more advanced.
That hasn't happened yet. The degree of improvement needed to replace human divers is far off.
>But the question is, do you really need something with high dexterity to be underwater all the time to operate a fish farm?
>Here's more on the fish farm I posted, it's worth noting they were able to operate almost everything by remote.
I know for a fact they still employ divers. Scale up your farm enough and you either need more divers, or habitats that allow you to get more work done with the same amount of people.
very interesting hobby you have there aquanon, I learned a lot thank you
>>Stationary enclosures can produce their own fish food by using falling waste to fertilize beds of kelp below, which the food is then made from
Last time I checked, stationary enclosures still had problems with accumulating heavy metals on the sea floor. Kelp is not going to fix that.
>>But the question is, do you really need something with high dexterity to be underwater all the time to operate a fish farm?
Why? What tasks require people to be underwater 100% of the time?
>>I know for a fact they still employ divers.
but they don't have divers underwater all the time the fish farm is operating.
>Why? What tasks require people to be underwater 100% of the time?
Sufficiently large scale mariculture. If you have enough enclosures, at least one will always need attention at any given time.
>but they don't have divers underwater all the time the fish farm is operating.
Because existing operations are not yet large enough.
>Last time I checked, stationary enclosures still had problems with accumulating heavy metals on the sea floor. Kelp is not going to fix that.
Farming in a slight current (such as on the edge of the gulf stream) will.
Look, do you want life to be cool and fun or don't you? If yes, we need to find some way to make humans useful in exciting positions like this. Sure, eventually it can all be done by robots, but do we want that?
The end of that path, of relentless automation, is a world with 100% machines and 0% humans. We'll just keep making them smart and more capable until we've recreated ourselves or something functionall equivalent, at which point what are humans for? We're designing ourselves out of the picture and don't even realize it.
>Well we all know how it went
Soma was pretty good. WAU only wanted to help humanity. A few dozen dick shrinking monsters as prototypes isn't too bad progression considering what it put together later on.
Simon was proof that Wau had figured out how to make stable, sane embodied human scans. If left alone it would continue making constructs closer and closer to human, but able to survive on a ruined Earth.
Underwater colonization is a stupid fantasy.
What you need to know is that Humans are dry-land animals. You also need to know that a lot of effort is exerted in Human housing to keep out water, and that's just the water that:
1. Falls from the sky and perhaps pools on top of the structure;
2. Water that seeps in via humidity;
3. Water that oozes up from the ground or flows in via runoff (i.e. flooding).
Given all this preference and effort to STAY DRY, it's total stupidity to seek to live underwater. And that's why we just don't do it.
And there's no real shortage of dry land which would possibly compel Humans to move off the land itself, even if just on the water surface of large lakes and the ocean (which is itself a huge problem given the formation of damaging waves from storms).
Underwater living is dumb. Stop being dumb. We had to put up with that crap from some total asshole of a poster a year or so ago, and we don't need that sort of lunacy to come back.
You had the option to leave it alone, just walk the fuck away.
You had a shit-tonne of options in the game, the shame was that none of them mattered for any gameplay ending, it's only player morality that is impacted.
It does a damn good job of handing mind-games to the player though so the game is really great in this aspect.