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Iceberg saves Titanic!

  (+7, -1)
(+7, -1)
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Suggested indirectly by the linked idea.

It is quite widely known that the Titanic sunk after hitting an iceberg. It is also generally believed, but much less commented on, that the iceberg remained afloat after the incident, despite receiving quite significant damage. This simple fact speaks volumes, I think you will agree.

Clearly, it is not practicable for all ships to carry icebergs around as emergency buoyancy aids. Howevertheless, the necessary ingredients to make ice are generally close at hand, and the recipe is well known.

Proposed, therefore, is an emergency flotation system for stricken vessels. It consists of an intensely powerful refrigeration system, powered by an intensely powerful power source. A small nuclear reactor may suffice, and is already available as an option on some submarines. The refrigeration coils run in multiple loops just inside the outer hull. The multiple loops ensure that, if the coil is damaged at one point, that section can be isolated from the remainder.

As soon as the vessel starts to take on water, the emergency refrigeration system is turned on, slowly encasing the ship in its own personal iceberg, and providing emergency buoyancy.

Admittedly, this idea may be wildly impractical and require unrealistic levels of engineering; but it has its downsides too, such as the difficulty in steering the stricken (and now iceberg-encapsulated) ship effectively. However, we are English and will therefore persist.

MaxwellBuchanan, Jul 28 2016

Suggested by: Whole-ship_20life_20raft
[MaxwellBuchanan, Jul 28 2016]

Project Habakkuk https://en.wikipedi...ki/Project_Habakkuk
WKTE [8th of 7, Jul 28 2016]

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       Baked (or rather, frozen).   

8th of 7, Jul 28 2016

       Yes yes, Pykrete and all that. But that was rather a different cup of tea, inasmuch as the ship in question lacked a hull. Still, it was good of him to do the feasibility study.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jul 28 2016

       The side effect of this is that the heat which is removed must be dumped somewhere. I suggest another area of water. This would increase in temperature quite a bit.   

       So, while waiting for the ship to raise ice, one could bask on tropical waters on an inflateable bed, preferably with one of those little cup holders.
Ling, Jul 28 2016

       // must be dumped somewhere //   

       I suggest aft of the ship. This would help to keep the props and rudders from becoming fouled with ice, allowing the Swan Hellenice to maintain steerage. [+]
whatrock, Jul 28 2016

       You could incorporate a porous outer-hull to be sprayed with jets of liquid CO2 from inside which would cause the sub to initially sink while plugging ruptures but then exterior water would freeze to the new carbon dioxide hull and raise the craft as long as the jets keep providing that layer of coolth as it sublimates.   

       Iceberg IS the Titanic - see Icetanic idea and job offer - [you won't get better!] + for any Titanic idea - It's part of my family!
xenzag, Jul 29 2016


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