Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
h a l f b a k e r y
Open other side.

idea: add, search, annotate, link, view, overview, recent, by name, random

meta: news, help, about, links, report a problem

account: browse anonymously, or get an account and write.

user:
pass:
register,


                           

Please log in.
Before you can vote, you need to register. Please log in or create an account.

Antifreeze Shipping Lane

Provide Russia with a year-round passage across the Arctic Ocean
  (+3, -4)
(+3, -4)
  [vote for,
against]

In geopolitics 101, you learn how the Russians continuously tried pushing south so to get unfettered year-round access to a non-frozen ocean. Pickup any world history book and you’ll see the unbelievable price that they were willing to pay for this over the centuries. Well, we’re now in the 21st century and it’s looking as bleak as ever for them. Had they thought of the following idea, perhaps all that would have been unnecessary.

Think of a huge “U” shaped trench, 100 feet wide, 100 feet deep and thousands of miles long. Now make the walls of this trench out of iron sheets, fill it with water, attach lots of buoys so it will float and set it in the Arctic Ocean. It would need to be big enough for a ship to sail though it, strong enough to withstand an iceberg impact and anchored well enough to resist the ocean currents flowing under it. Finally you would pour lots of non-toxic antifreeze (or Vodka) into it to prevent the water inside from freezing.

If there are any bored engineering students out there, I’m sure they could have fun designing clever ways for ships to pass one another and add collapsible cross beams for added strength (to counter the force of the ice water, which expands as it freezes). Long and slender freighters can be designed for it, so the trench cross section could be made smaller. Handling large icebergs may be tricky, but you can always strike them with a missile or two and blow them to smithereens.

I never said that this would be cheap, but the Russians have been known for their over-the-top construction projects (think of the trans Siberian railway, which was built 100 years ago <see link>). When it comes to national security, a few trillion dollars over a few decades is chip change. In fact it could even be something of a “new deal” for their sagging economy. Hey, they may even be able to get some help from the Finns.

Lastly, I should mention the related idea of the “trans-oceanic tunnel”<link>. I think a trench would be far less prohibitive to construct, given equal transportation requirements. But one thing is for sure, a tunnel is far easier to sabotage and destroy, so it would be far less appealing from a national security standpoint.

imho, Mar 02 2009

Trans-Siberian Railway http://en.wikipedia...ns-Siberian_Railway
[imho, Mar 02 2009]

Trans-Oceanic Tunnel Trans-Oceanic_20Tunnel
[imho, Mar 02 2009]

[link]






       "non-toxic antifreeze" is an oxymoron, I believe. So I'll vote for the vodka.
normzone, Mar 02 2009
  

       I thought artic ice was not the ocean water itself freezing, but snow settling and solidifying on top of the ocean's surface. Would anti-freeze be able to prevent this snow solidification?
xaviergisz, Mar 02 2009
  

       [] A Nuclear-powered Submarine Merchant Marine/Navy fleet might be less expensive (and more plausible).
Speed Razor, Mar 02 2009
  

       Couldn't they just add more salt to the existing water?
coprocephalous, Mar 02 2009
  

       vodka canal. "Captain! Why do the men keep jumping overboard?"
saprolite, Mar 02 2009
  

       Ocean ice will crush silly trench like bug.
bungston, Mar 02 2009
  

       I agree the nuke-sub fleet sounds cheaper and smarter also that ice would crush this, and anything similar, like a bug. I know there has also been talk of blimp freighters which could also solve the issue.   

       How about a light, but heavier than air blimp that drove on huge tires across the ice to a second port for shipping. It's possible this would be more efficient than air propelled blimps.
MisterQED, Mar 02 2009
  

       I agree the nuke-sub fleet sounds cheaper and smarter also that ice would crush this, and anything similar, like a bug. I know there has also been talk of blimp freighters which could also solve the issue.   

       How about a light, but heavier than air blimp that drove on huge tires across the ice to a second port for shipping. It's possible this would be more efficient than air propelled blimps.
MisterQED, Mar 02 2009
  

       Like puny bug.
bungston, Mar 02 2009
  

       (and more plausible).
Speed Razor, Mar 02 2009
  

       //"non-toxic antifreeze"//   

       Sugar.   

       Not sure how feasible it would be, but probably more feasible than vodka.
Veho, Mar 03 2009
  
      
[annotate]
  


 

back: main index

business  computer  culture  fashion  food  halfbakery  home  other  product  public  science  sport  vehicle