First Underwater Glider Crosses the Atlantic Ocean

by Mark R

ru27flight_300When I reported on the first attempt at an intercontinental jet-pack flight, I stated that it usually takes a Charles Lindbergh transatlantic flight before some new technology literally takes off.

Such was the case of the Scarlet Knight, which is officially the first underwater glider to cross 4,591 miles of the Atlantic ocean. It traveled for 221 days to make the journey across.

The underwater glider was built by a team from Rutgers University, who named it the Scarlet Knight after Rutgers sports even though it is yellow. Rutgers partnered with the Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Peurtos Del Estado (Spanish Port Authority), the National Oceanographic Partnership Program, and many others.

NOAA assistant administrator believes that an important milestone has been achieved, and “opens new frontiers in oceanography”. He went on to say that “it is through efforts like this that we will continue to learn more about the wonders of the ocean at a critical time for our planet”. I’m assuming that by critical time, he is talking about climate change and other environmental damage.

The Scarlet Knight isn’t the only underwater glider that Rutgers University has. Right now, they have seven of them at the cost of New Jersey. The success of the Scarlet Knight will insure that more underwater gliders will be charting vital information about the ocean.


6 reviews or comments

‘cost of New Jersey’ Says: December 7, 2009 at 7:45 pm

Tell us please, what is New Jersey worth?

Pax Says: December 8, 2009 at 2:25 am

“to cross 4,591 miles of the Atlantic ocean. It traveled for 221 days at a pace of about 4 centimeters per second.”

Google says…
4 cm/sec = 0.0895 miles/hour

If it was traveling at 1mph, it would have taken 191.29 days (4591 @ 1 mile every hour = 4591 hours/24 hours).

This thing was going 11.17 times slower (1 / 0.0895) or 191.29 days X 11.17 = 2,136 days.

The numbers in this article are wrong. The source article does not indicate how fast it was going.

Edwin Says: December 8, 2009 at 4:53 pm

Thanks for the eagle eyes, Pax. Have amended the post to reflect the data on hand.

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