World record for a long stay underground nuclear submarine
At a time when six and a half million people of the world are flying in a ship thousands of feet above the ground, there are thousands of people in submarines below sea level. Nuclear submarines are one of the most expensive weapons in the world. Their greatest strength is their silence. They spend most of their lives underwater. The most delicate thing in this powerful weapon is its crew, so let’s take a look at the lives of the people living in this metal box. Not everyone qualifies for the submarine crew. The Navy has strict conditions for this, one of which is a psychological test. Living in a metal box for a long time is not easy. One mistake can endanger people’s lives and strong nerves are essential. It is planned for one month at a time. The record for the most time spent underwater and off-surface at one time (which is public) is that of an eleven-month-old American submarine. (Sixty to seventy US submarines are in world waters at a time. Prolonged confinement in a small space without the sun affects the nerves.
How long can a nuclear submarine stay underwater? It just depends on how much food it contains. Its reactors are fueled once, which is enough for the entire life of this submarine. Air and water are regenerated, so food (ie fuel for the crew) is the only thing that determines how much time a dive can take.
How do nuclear submarine crews work?
Submarine crew time is divided into three eight-hour shifts. Eight hours of duty, eight hours of private time (in which they could play, read, exercise), and eight hours of sleep. There is very little space to live and a small coffin-like bed with a thin curtain separating it. There is no special concept of privacy. Someone has to go to bed at any time of the day, so it is forbidden to make loud noises or close doors. Usually, the number of staff is more than the total number of beds here, so the beds are shared. One for one shift, the same for another in the next shift.
The problem of space is not only the beds but also the shower and toilet. There are two showers for more than 100 staff and no more than three minutes of bathing. (Submarine bathwater is filtered by seawater). Just a laundry room. (Clean clothes are a luxury here). The toilet is also used carefully. The waste is collected in a special tank which has to be removed from the submarine at the appropriate time. There are cards, board games, video games, etc. for the entertainment of the staff, which can also be good friends with each other.
The submarine’s engine takes up the most space (half of the submarine is this). Kitchen in second place. There is a good variety of food here. This is important to keep staff happy with the stressful life under the sea for weeks. Fresh food is served first, then preserved in tin cans. There is no internet connection on the submarine and communication with the outside world can only take place when the submarine comes to the surface and this is rare. The contact submarine is easy to detect and silence is important, so the contact is minimal. The submarine crew does not communicate with their family or friends for weeks or months. The staff’s mutual friendships become deep and lasting. Some of these unwritten rules apply here. As no one talks about any controversial issue. Topics like politics are never discussed. They have their own traditions and ways of living. They are also forgiven for many things of military discipline. As for shaving or daily shaving.
(They reapply when they return from a trip).
Submarine life is not for everyone. Thousands of people are now floating under this ocean in a metal capsule in a place closed for weeks without fresh air and sunshine.