Mystery Object Found On Indonesian Beach Identified

Mystery Object Found On Indonesian Beach Identified

Another 'mystery object' has washed up on an Indonesian beach. The device was discovered by fishermen on February 9 on the Selayar Islands, South Sulawesi. The fishermen kept it for a while and alerted authorities when a red light started flashing(!)

Mystery Object Found On Indonesian Beach

Some reports describe it as missile-like. Others, possibly influenced by a spate of Chinese ocean gliders which washed up in Indonesia, label it another "seaglider". It is neither. Dave Owen (Twitter: @DaveGOwen), who has extensive experience of survey techniques and technology, has identified it as a Streamer Retriever Device (SRD).

The Geospace Technologies SRD-500S series matches to the object. SRDs are placed at specific intervals on a towed sensor cable (streamer) used for surveys. They are attached using Quick Cuffs.

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The sensor cable is typically the type used for seismic survey, known as a seismic streamer. The SRD aids in the recovery of the streamer if it becomes accidentally severed from a tow vessel. If the streamer goes deeper (or somehow the pressure passing through the depth port exceeds a calibrated depth pressure, typically 40m but sometimes deeper depending on the conditions or survey modelling) the CO2 bottle inside will release it's contents. This fills a large yellow bag to overcome sea pressure and try to raise the retriever (and anything it is attached to) up to the sea surface. They can be activated when the streamer sinks to a pre-programmed depth between 20 to 200 meters.

The red flashing LED light assures integrity of the dual-battery system and firing circuit.

Mystery Object Found On Indonesian Beach
Note that as well as the size and form, the marking also match.

WARNING. How NOT To Handle Mystery Items You Find On the Beach

Like many devices used in the undersea environment, SRDs can be extremely dangerous if mishandled. The soldier holding the end is in the worst possible position. (Jokes about his pose aside). As the warning on the device makes clear, it contains high-pressure CO2 gas. If the pressure from the CO2 were released it would likely kill him. Or at best inflict life-changing injuries. Mystery Object Found On Indonesian Beach

If you find an object on a beach which looks like a missile, bomb or specialist device, do not manhandle it. If it has warnings on it, read and respect them. If a red light flashes,... crickey.

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