Weekend Fun: The U-Scull

Milko Ozlu, a Swedish designer who works for Nissan in Tokyo, has been fascinated by the concept of powered exoskeletons and body amplifiers since he studied for his BA in industrial design at Konstfack in Stockholm. When he was studying for his masters degree at the vehicle design department of the Royal College of Art in London, he took his passion and applied it to his thesis project, the U-Scull, a new type of human powered submarine.

The U-Scull is meant to be used in shallow depths, and employs a rowing action for propulsion. Based on his research, Ozlu believes a “nano-scale, Teflon-coated, artificial sharkskin surface to minimize the frictional losses from surface drag” would be well suited for the 9.5 metre-long — when someone decides to invent it…

Milko Ozlu’s design calls for the Uscull to be covered in this energy-efficient material with special glass areas where the user to enjoy the underwater panoramic view.

“To give the users a sensation of normal rowing, with resistance isolated to one stage of the rowing cycle, and to prevent the oars from killing the speed on their forward pull, I developed a sling-shot type mechanism, that forces the oars through the water with the energy stored from the rowers pull. And the folding blades are essentially to prevent the scull from braking on the oars forward rotation,” Ozlu has revealed.

The U-Scull certainly invokes the imagination for recreation, but Ozlu can also see this as an Olympic sport. For now, this concept is still in the theoretical stage, but who knows…an enterprising company may want to take up the oars and start rowing…

Author: FutureMusic

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