Nautilus-2020 Private Private Submarine
What better way to blow the Monaco Yacht show out of the water than with your own private luxury submarine? The Nautilus 2020 is exactly what you need if you are a reclusive billionaire with a secret island lair and feel that the mega-yacht scene is a bit too pedestrian.
The Nautilus 2020 is inspired by the submarine in Jules Verne’s 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea. Many of the features are direct references to Verne’s design but otherwise the boat is thoroughly modern and has a dash of Bond Villain thrown in. Fundamentally, it’s a proper submarine that has some of the trappings of a mega-yacht rather than vice-versa. You can surface in a tropical lagoon and sip cocktails on the sun deck, or use the launch to explore the island, but it comes into its own below the waves. Like Verne’s Nautilus it has large port holes to wonder at the strange plants and creatures of the depths.
The most noticeable feature is that it is propelled by two rim-drive pumpjets mounted each side of the hull. These can swivel up and down, something not possible with regular shaft-driven pumpjets. Twin propulsors allows for less powerful motors in each, and a smaller blade diameter which simplifies procurement. Importantly, the rim-drive pumpjets eliminate the need for a drive shaft in the rear part of the submarine, thus freeing it up for luxury habitation with a minisub hangar hidden in the tail, where the propeller (‘screw’) would normally be.
The minisub hangar can be accessed from the master bedroom, allowing the Captain to come and go discretely. The minisub enables the Captain to explore and reconnoiter ahead of the submarine, and to perform important missions away from the boat.
At the other end of the boat in the bow, spacious diver facilities allow the internal stowage of a range of diver transports including up to two three-person high performance submersible canoes:
Entering in through a 2.5 meter diameter hatch (influenced by the ‘Bat Cave’ on USS Halibut), you descend down a semi-spiraling staircase. You are now facing towards the rear of the boat where the luxury habitation is. In front of you is a corridor with pressure-resistant porthole roof lights. Either side are guest cabins, and at the back are the Captain’s private quarters which include a small study/library and en-suite bathroom.
Captain’s note: removable panels in the entrance stairs allows objects up to 1.5 meters in diameter and 7 meters in length to be brought down into the submarine, directly through a passageway into the engine room, and then further forward to the diver operations area.
Below the entrance lobby is a control room which takes up two whole deck levels. The design owes more the Starship Enterprise and NASA control rooms than the crowded jungle of monitors and pipes in Navy submarines. The Captain or Watch Officer sits in a thrown-like seat in the middle, looking at a personal Tablet control panel. There are several crew stations with Multi-functional displays, and there are large screens positioned around the forward hemisphere, through which to issue your demands to the United Nations.
- The bridge on the Starship Enterprise, original TV series
- NASA control center
As we head aft on the middle decks we pass important functional space include the second officer’s quarters and a quiet control room for Sonar and underwater video monitoring. The corridor soon opens up into a spacious Salon which is modelled on Verne’s Nautilus. There are large portholes either side, and a pipe organ against the far bulkhead. Going further aft the next room is the fine dining room which, like the control room and Salon, occupies two decks in height. This too has portholes.
The other notable room in the aft compartment is an indoor garden, possibly using hydroponics.
The aft luxury compartment is separated from the crew and engineering compartment by an access tunnel. The forward half is double-hulled with ballast tanks around the outside. The engineering space has a bank of fuel cells for Air-Independent Power (AIP), and two large diesel generators for recharging the massive lithium-ion battery. Although the massive energy capacity can power a lavish lifestyle, it can also take the submarine on very long underwater excursions is energy consumption is managed.
A gas turbine can be fitted in place of the diesel generators but this requires some redesign.
In the bow, the crew live above the diver space which is similar to the torpedo room on a Navy submarine. There are two ocean interfaces which future Bond Villains may have re-use plans for:
Vertical Ocean Interface: A straight-through tube about 2 meters in diameter and 10 meters depth. This can carry a deep diving Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) which dives out of the bottom.
Forward ocean interface: forward facing horizontal lock-out tube similar to a very large torpedo tube. Divers and underwater scooters can leave and re-enter through this chamber.
70 meter version Original artwork - CLICK for HIGH-RESOLUTION
The 70 meter version is the same length as Jules Verne's Nautilus. The reduced size affects range on AIP due to smaller LOX (liquid oxygen) tanks, and has reduced stores and crew space. The snort mast is eliminated so the submarine has to surface to run its diesel engines. There is only one server farm, and fewer ablutions.
Jules Verne's Nautilus, 1870
The Nautilus was the fictional submarine of Captain Nemo in Jules Verne's novels Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea (1870) and The Mysterious Island (1874). From descriptions in the book, it is 70 meters long and about 8 meters in diameter. It has a small pilot house with windows, and a second ‘light house’ superstructure further aft with a boat between them. There were various rooms inside, notably the salon which had large port holes from which to marvel at the wonders of the ocean, a fine dining room. Captain Nemo plays haunting music on a pipe organ.
1 & 2. Probably the oldest representations of the Nautilus, from an early edition of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
3. Nautilus from The Mysterious Island
4. Covert Shores interpretation. From Cutaway of Jules Verne’s Nautilus
Other Fictional influences
- USOS Seaview from Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, 1961
- Caspartina, the submarine used by Sebastian Shaw (the leader of the Hellfire Club) in X-Men: First Class. The boat is a mix of a WW2 U-Boat with the stern of the USS Albacore.
- Galaga, the submarine in Lost (2006) which was a DHARMA Initiative submarine, later used the Others as a means of connecting to the outside world.
- SPECTRE divers using a disguised Cos.Mo.S Seahorse-II SDV, Thunderball (James Bond), 1965
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Real-world submarine influences
- USS Halibut
- A-26 Class
- XMS-31 concept
Other luxury submarine designs
- Migaloo Private Submersible Yacht concept
- Neyk subaquatic luxury jet concept
- Phoenix-1000 luxury submarine design
- U-010 Underwater Luxury Yacht Design
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