Today I decided to head out for a road trip. I have been having screwy days off the last three weeks, and next week I go back to a regular two-consecutive-day weekend. I have been busy helping out with various things so I have not minded swapping my days off around to help out.
This morning I woke up on my own at 5:30 (ugh…). It was quite nice to get a slow start to the day. I was not sure what I was going to do today, but all I knew was I was going to do something somewhere. It was foggy here and a bit cool, so I thought I would head east for some clearer weather.
I did a few errands along the way in town and just started driving – destination unknown. As i got down the highway a bit I remembered something I wanted to go check out but had not done yet. It was the Naval Undersea Museum at Keyport, near Bremerton. A bonus… it is FREE ADMISSION!
Driving up you see the top of a sub sitting in the yard next to the building. Then, as you pull into the parking area, there are two deep-sea submersible vehicles, the Deep Quest and the Trieste II. The latter was a rather sizable vehicle as you can tell.
Here are a couple of links about these two vehicles:
A footnote about the Trieste – it used 66,000 gallons of aviation gas as a flotation device. Sounds rather dangerous to me!
I went inside and there were many displays and it was actually quite interesting. Numerous things about how diving has changed from the very beginning to present-day technology, and many different types of diving suits on display. They have a large display of various torpedoes, mines and how they work, sub mock-up displays, models, history… all sorts of things.
In the 1800s a naval officer (I believe) designed a very ingenious torpedo. I was amazed by it. It had a flywheel inside that they would spin up before they would launch it. The flywheel had pistons and rods that connected it to the propellers. Ingenious in itself, but it gets even more brilliant. AS the flywheel loses power, the pitch of the props actually CHANGE to maximize the reduced energy. Look at the pic and see how this works and it will help you understand the complexity and brilliance of the design better:
I walked into one of the rooms and there was this very long torpedo. I walked up to look at it and discovered it was a Japanese manned torpedo – the undersea version of the Kamikaze.
Here is a German torpedo:
I was amazed at the technology in the mines and in the metals used in the torpedoes.
I will definitely go back for another visit and take a bit more time walking around reading the panels more thoroughly. It is well worth a visit!