For $1.7 million, You Could Have Your Own Personal Submarine

by Owen James Burke

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Graham Hawkes and Sir Richard Branson diving with great white sharks in the new DeepFlight Super Falcon Mark II off Guadalupe Island, Mexico. Photo credit: Amos Nachoum, courtesy of DeepFlight

For the price of a brand new Bugatti or a beach house in Spain, you could place an order for a custom-built deep-diving personal submarine (which is remarkably reasonable when you think about it). Three have been sold so far… — one to venture capitalist Tom Perkins, one to Red Bull founder Dietrich Mateschitz, and another to an Turkish client whose name has not been disclosed.

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Photo credit: DeepFlight

It’s a far cry from what most would call an affordable or necessary purchase, but unlike marine research vessels which generally cost a pretty penny more and just sink to the bottom, the new DeepFlight Super Falcon Mark II “flies” along at a very cruise-y 6 knots (that’s about the hull speed of most sailboats). And although it costs nearly three times as much as Sir Richard Branson’s Necker Nymph (also by Hawkes Ocean Technologies), the built-to-order DeepFlight Super Falcon Mark II has a sealed cockpit to keep you dry while it cruises along at 6 knots, and does not necessitate a PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) license and scuba gear. It’s probably a safe bet that the fourth sale will be to Sir Branson, who after having test-flown the new model will in all likelihood will have to add one to his quiver of aquatic toys at Necker Island.

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Photo credit: DeepFlight

The DeepFlight Super Falcon Mark II operates on a brushless DC electric engine, making for high energy efficiency (more torque per watt) and minimal noise, not that sea creatures aren’t going to notice you either way, but there’s a lot to be said for viewing them without the ambient whizzing of an engine.

Most personal submarines require that pilots and passengers wear scuba tanks, or have an uncanny ability to hold their breath for long periods of time. Measuring about 19.5 feet long by about 10 feet wide, this two-ton carbon-reinforced composite vessel is capable of diving down to nearly 400 feet — three times as deep as Sir Richard Branson’s Necker Nymph.

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Looking at the controls in the pilot’s cockpit, the Super Falcon seems simple enough for your video game-savvy teen to operate, and light enough for the minivan to tow along on family vacation, if after purchasing one of these things you can still afford a family vacation. Photo credit: DeepFlight

For those with a sky-is-the-limit spending budget, there’s also an option to integrate the Super Falcon Mark II with your private yacht (because if you’re going to order one, you’ve surely got a private yacht already).

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Photo credit: DeepFlight

The one thing I find the Super Falcon Mark II to be missing is a plexiglass panel below or at least a realtime camera, for when you want to look at something apart from the occasional shark or whale interrupting the monotonously blue deep and the sun above you. Then again, if you’ve got nearly $2 million to dispose of, what’s an extra few grand to install a customized realtime HD camera? And, of course, if you do decide to add one of these to your collection, be sure to think of us when considering a copilot for her test flight.

Learn more about the Super Falcon Mark II and place your order at DeepFlight’s website — OJB

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