The National Institute of Ocean Technology has completed an intermediate technology demonstration of a crawler based deep-sea mining system at 410 m. This system has a flexible riser and single stage piston pump. In a trial run the seabed was dredged and the slurry, with a concentration of 17 per cent by weight, was pumped from seabed to the surface ship. The Department of Ocean Development is presently seeking sanction for a proposal for in-situ measurement of geo-technical properties of seabed at 6,000 m deep nodule site.
An underwater thruster of 1.6 kW rating and 140 mm diametre has also been designed and developed for operations up to 1,000 m water depth. This underwater thruster could be used for underwater intervention systems like remotely operated vehicle (ROV), remotely operable surface skimmer (ROSS) and other surface vehicles.
These underwater intervention systems are imported currently and keeping in mind the deep-sea activities in India, there is an immediate need to develop such thrusters indigenously.
For details contact: National Institute of Ocean Technology, Velacherry-Tambaram main road Narayanapuram, Chennai, Tamil Nadu-601302. Tel: 44-2460063/0064/0066; Fax: 2460645.