Russian President investigates wreck in Dutch built mini submarine

Russian President Vladimir Putin recently investigated the wreck of the Oleg in a C-Explorer 5 mini-submarine built by Dutch company U-Boat Worx.

Oleg - the flagship frigate of the Tsar - sank in the Baltic Sea in 1869 after it collided with another vessel.

The Russian President was impressed with his underwater tour of the wreck in the world’s first “sub-sea limousine”, as this luxury mini-sub is also known.

Since the President’s dive on Monday, the world’s media has focused a spotlight on U-Boat Worx submarines.

The Dutch company mostly sells its mini-subs to owners of superyachts, luxury resorts and research organisations. Absolute anonymity and discretion as to who are the owners (and operators) of U-Boat Worx submersibles is guaranteed, and strictly enforced. However, on this occasion, circumstances are uniquely, and dramatically, different.

Erik Hasselman of U-Boat Worx explained, “Media attention focusing on President Putin’s sub dive has now appeared in numerous news reports globally, so we are now able to align ourselves publicly, and proudly, with this exciting dive event; we are delighted that a person of such stature has showcased our submarine’s outstanding capabilities to the world.”

The C-Explorer 5 was officially launched in 2012 during the Monaco Yacht Show.

At this stage the C-Explorer 5 is the only five person submersible available in the market; the fourteenth submersible by U-Boat Worx is already in build. It has a thick acrylic pressurized hull, through which passengers have an unobstructed view. The mini-sub can dive to 300 metres and, when equipped with double battery capacity, for up to 16 hours.

Submarines are often used for deep-sea oceanographic research; the wreck of the frigate Oleg - discovered in 2003 at a depth of 60 metres in the Gulf of Finland - is currently being investigated by the Russian Geographical Society, of which Putin is Chairman.

Roman Prokhorov, diver and discoverer of the Oleg said to President Putin, “The bottom of the Baltic Sea is a museum of sunken ships”.

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