Military Review

Deepwater diving complex GVK-450

For sea trials, a rescue ship "Igor Belousov" of the 21300 project is being prepared. The main task of this vessel will be to participate in the rescue operations of the crews of submarines, as well as to ensure the work of divers at depths up to 450 m. To perform such tasks, the vessel must receive the Bester rescue device of the 18271 project and two submarines APC-600. However, the basis of equipment for underwater work is the deep-sea diving complex GVK-450.

The first units of the diving complex for the new vessel were made in the summer of 2012. By the beginning of autumn 2014, the manufacturer had transferred all the components of the complex to the Admiralty Shipyards (St. Petersburg) shipyard. Not so long ago, the installation of the GVK-450 complex was completed, and soon it will be ready for tests, which are scheduled to begin next year.

The development of the diving complex GVK-450 started in the middle of the last decade, but for some reason was delayed. Initially, the creation of the system was carried out by the Central Design Bureau "Lazurit" (Nizhny Novgorod), which was assisted by a number of enterprises, including Moscow company "Tethys Pro", which produces various diving equipment. According to reports, the first version of the draft GVK-450 was developed by the beginning of the current decade, but did not suit the military. The share of domestic components in the complex did not exceed 25-30 percent, because of which the customer decided to change the composition of contractors.

Ultimately, it was decided to transfer the status of the main contractor to Tethys Pro, which, in collaboration with Divex (United Kingdom) and the Almaz Central Marine Design Bureau (the rescue ship developer), was to develop a new version of the deep-sea diving complex, and then start its production. It was in this line-up that the contracting companies continued their work.

The main problem that had to be solved when developing the GVK-450 complex was ensuring the work of divers at depths up to 450 m under conditions of a corresponding high pressure. Such requirements led to the formation of an interesting appearance of the complex, which should ensure the work of divers for a long time.

Such phenomena accompanying the work of divers as compression and decompression are widely known. Under the influence of ambient pressure in the tissues of the human body, nitrogen and helium accumulate (this phenomenon is called compression), which must be removed by gradually lowering the pressure to normal values ​​(decompression). If the pressure changes too quickly, so-called decompression or decompression sickness: dissolved gases form bubbles in the blood that can block blood flow or damage tissue.

The company Tethys Pro completed the installation of residential pressure chamber GVK-450 on the vessel "Igor Belousov", November 2013 year

To avoid injury, divers should slowly rise to the surface or use special pressure chambers. It should be borne in mind that the time for decompression is directly related to the time that the diver spent at depth. So, after an hour at a depth of 100 m, a diver must spend about 14 hours on decompression. With increasing depth, such periods increase significantly.

The basis of the deep-sea diving complex GVK-450 is the idea of ​​a long stay under pressure. Approximately three days after being under pressure, the tissues of the body no longer absorb nitrogen and helium, after which the time required for decompression does not change. In the context of diving work, such saturation allows a specialist to work at a depth of several hours and then rest in a pressure chamber with appropriate pressure. Such work may continue for several weeks.

When ensuring the work of deep-sea divers, the complex GVK-450 should work as follows. In its residential pressure chambers are located up to 12 divers. Within a few days they are under the control of specialists undergo compression, after which they can dive to the work site at depths up to 450 m using a diving complex. It is assumed that divers will work for six hours in three-person shifts. The same air pressure when working at depth and while on board a ship will allow only one decompression after all work is completed.

The complex GVK-450 has a fairly large size and occupies three decks of a rescue ship. Its main element is several pressure chambers mounted on the second deck. The vessel “Igor Belousov” received four residential pressure chambers, connected with the help of a lock chamber of a similar design. When performing diving operations, four pressure chambers can accommodate 12 people. When rescuing the crew of an emergency submarine, up to 60 people can be placed in the pressure chambers. The maximum air pressure in the pressure chambers is 45 atmospheres, which corresponds to the pressure at a depth of 450 m.

Control and communication systems are installed near the pressure chambers. The crew of the ship controls the pressure in the pressure chambers, as well as the composition of the supplied gas mixture. Equipment is provided to monitor and communicate with people in the pressure chambers. Under the pressure chambers, life-support equipment is located, which is responsible for the pressure and microclimate in the pressure chambers.

The central pressure chamber is a gateway designed to prepare for diving and to move from the living quarters to the diving bell. The bell itself is located on the deck above. There is also a rail track to move the bell to a vertical shaft, along which it falls into the water and rises back. The lower exit of the mine is located on the bottom of the vessel.

Diving bell complex GVK-450 has a sealed durable housing, which has a number of systems. There is communication equipment, including video surveillance, emergency systems, etc. The bell is lowered to the working depth with a steel cable. In addition to the cable, it communicates with the vessel with the help of several hoses and cables, through which breathing mixture and electricity are supplied. During the exit of the deep-water diver, the gas mixture is fed into his spacesuit, exhaled gases are diverted to the vessel, where they are cleaned, enriched with oxygen and returned to the back. In addition, the spacesuit has a heating system that provides a more comfortable long stay at depth.

According to reports, it is proposed to lower three divers to the working depth with the help of a diving complex. Two must do the necessary work, and the third will remain at the bell, watch over their colleagues and, if necessary, help them. The ability of divers to stay in the 12 pressure chambers allows organizing shift work. In this case, after raising the first three divers, going to rest, other specialists may occupy the place in the bell. Thanks to this, it is possible to ensure almost uninterrupted work of divers at the facility. Breaks in work will be necessary only for lifting one shift and lowering the other.

The proposed method of prolonged dwelling under pressure greatly simplifies the tasks, although in this case the work of deep-sea divers cannot be called easy. From the beginning to the completion of the work, specialists will have to continuously remain in difficult conditions of high pressure and in an atmosphere of helium-oxygen mixture. In addition, the stay in the pressure chambers is complicated by the need for a long stay in a confined space.

To date, the specialists of the Admiralty Shipyard and Tetis Pro have completed the installation of all units of the GVK-450 deep-sea diving complex and have begun commissioning. Upon completion of this stage, the complex will be tested and will be ready for preliminary and interagency tests. According to the latest data, all necessary work will be completed by next spring, by the beginning of navigation. Roughly in April 2015, tests of the diving complex as part of a new rescue vessel will start. If all the work goes without serious problems, the ship "Igor Belousov" will be transferred the fleet until the end of next year.

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  1. Anton Gavrilov
    Anton Gavrilov 1 December 2014 08: 26
    We really need a thing with emergency rescue services in the fleet, we have a complete * oops. By the way, the steamer is preparing for the first exit.
    1. hoard
      hoard 1 December 2014 10: 09
      This is it demagnetization takes place. An interesting photo - rarely seen.
      1. Anton Gavrilov
        Anton Gavrilov 3 December 2014 18: 47
        I don’t spread the hat.)
    2. The comment was deleted.
  2. Rzhevsky
    Rzhevsky 1 December 2014 09: 13
    The author was a little mistaken, the decompression time depends on the use of the gas mixture for breathing. At 100 meters air is not used !!!, a mixture of oxygen / nitrogen / helium (trimix), or helium-oxygen mixture (gks) is used.
    1. opus
      opus 1 December 2014 14: 16
      Quote: Rzhevsky
      100 meters do not use air !!!

      We consider what bottom gas you need.
      Dalton's Law PO2 / FO2 / P, where
      PO2 - atmospheric partial pressure of oxygen
      FO2 - oxygen fraction
      P - pressure in atm. abs.

      Step 1
      Depth 100 m → 11 atm.
      We accept the maximum partial pressure of oxygen in the working phase of immersion - 1,4 atm.
      1,4 / FO2 / 11 = 1,4 / 11 = 0,127, which implies 12% oxygen in the mixture.

      Step 2
      Determine the equivalent of anesthetic depth.
      Take the equivalent of anesthetic depth - 35 meters, which is equal to 4,5 atm.
      From Dalton’s law you determine what partial nitrogen pressure will be at 35 meters.
      PN2 / FN2 / P = PN2 / 0,79 / 4,5 = 0,79 x 4,5 = 3,55 atm.
      Using once again Dalton’s law, determine how much nitrogen at a depth of 100 meters will have the same effect as when immersed in air at a depth of 35 meters.
      3,55 / FN2 / 11, whence it follows
      FN2 = 3,55 / 11 = 0,323, whence it follows that nitrogen should be 32%.

      Step 3
      We determine how much helium should be in the mixture.
      100% - 12% (oxygen) - 32% (nitrogen) = 56% helium.
      The result is that your mixture will be called
      TMx12 / 56.
      ТМх 12 / 56 a pair of 12х2 at a pressure of 200 bar, 1 cylinder of 8-10 liters with EAN-32 nitrox and a cylinder of 12 liters with EAN-80 at a pressure of 200 bar.
  3. Akuzenka
    Akuzenka 1 December 2014 13: 57
    Always envious of divers and astronauts. Neither one nor the other did not. Although the geologist-geophysicist also sounds proudly!
    REXSTORZ 1 December 2014 15: 14
    An urgently needed thing should be in several fleets, otherwise you can’t get there and save (((
    I suppose everyone still remembers "Kursk" ((((
  5. predator.3
    predator.3 1 December 2014 18: 47
    the ocean, like space, needs research. good movie "abyss"
  6. masterovoy
    masterovoy 1 December 2014 20: 29
    I have experience putting into operation rescue ships Elbrus and Alagez with GVK-250 and their equipment. Based on this experience, I will say that under the condition of great stress l. the composition of the ship, shipyard and counterparties, favorable weather conditions, the absence of accidents and incidents in those. means, special. equipment, weapons, and with comprehensive support, factory tests will last two to three months, then dock repair and state tests, under the same conditions, plus storm tests in the Atlantic, this is another three to four months. Then working out the course tasks for another three months. They will be followed by trial operation for a year or two. Thus, the Navy will receive the ship only in 2017. By this time, the equipment will become obsolete and the ship will become unnecessary or little needed by the Navy, and several billion rubles will be thrown to the wind. Delaying the construction of ships is a waste of effort and money!
  7. andreyyu
    andreyyu 1 December 2014 23: 50
    Quote: masterovoy
    By this time, the equipment will become obsolete and the ship will become unnecessary or little needed by the Navy, and several billion rubles will be thrown to the wind. Delaying the construction of ships is a waste of effort and money!

    What does it mean to become obsolete? Will the format of disasters change :)?
    If the catastrophe happened at a depth of 450m, this ship will be able to carry out rescue operations. If we take into account the great depth, then today we do not have such a technique. Or do you suggest to wait until equipment up to 1000m appears? In any case, experience is gained in the design and manufacture of such equipment on the Russian element base. As a result, by 2017, experience will be gained, a ship with equipment for rescuing submariners (albeit outdated) will appear. Well, with your approach to 2017. NIKHREN will not be. Some authoritative opinions and hopes that "the West will help us."
    1. The comment was deleted.
    2. masterovoy
      masterovoy 2 December 2014 20: 39
      In the history of diving, 172 cases of deaths of submarines with crews on board were noted as a result of collisions, failure of technical means, systems, hull devices, fires, explosions of gas mixtures, ammunition, due to the fault of l / s and other reasons. (Not counting losses during the OB period). In 83% of cases of submarine deaths, they were located in waters with depths not exceeding 250 meters. In two cases, it was possible to save the crews almost without losses, and in three cases partially, you can draw your own conclusions ... Unfortunately, all equipment designed to search for the rescue of nuclear submarine crews and most of the energy and propulsion means of the rescue ship are of foreign origin and will require regulations and repairs. specialists and firms, and this is expensive and not always possible, especially in modern conditions of sanctions, the ship has a short life ... Now, if it were created in Russia, it would not be so beautiful, but for a long time and reliably, AS FOR EXAMPLE SS "EPRON "...! So Rogozin says: "We will do everything that needs to be built ourselves ..."
  8. xren
    xren 3 December 2014 00: 15
    When rescuing an emergency submarine crew, up to 60 people can be accommodated in pressure chambers.

    But will not it be enough? Of course, it’s unlikely that he’s lucky to get everyone out of the submarine, but if you succeed, but there is no place ... crying

    The same air pressure when working at depth and when on board the ship will allow for only one decompression after the end of all work.

    But does this really require the same pressure?

    And somehow strange, and diving equipment and pressure chambers are designed to a depth of 450 meters - why is this not a match?
    1. Rzhevsky
      Rzhevsky 3 December 2014 03: 24
      60 people save a lot already! Still, no one wondered, but how many of these 450 meters ?? On a ball, maybe a dozen people are who were at such depths, who were and survived.
      Following world statistics, there are records for the depth of the dive, the Englishman seems to be holding a record, scuba diving! 300 meters.

      And here, imagine, the crew is motley, and to evacuate. The chances of salvation?
      This deep-sea complex is more for science and experience in the development of depths.
      1. xren
        xren 3 December 2014 21: 59
        60 people save a lot already

        Well yes. With the Titanic much more saved ...

        Still, no one wondered, but how many of these 450 meters ?? On a ball, maybe a dozen people are who were at such depths, who were and survived.

        And this is what? Decompression may be needed when evacuating submariners from a submarine at a depth of ten meters, or even less.