In service1984
General characteristics
TypeDeep-submergence vehicle
Length8.0 m (26.2 ft)
Beam2.7 m (8.9 ft)
Draft3.81 m (12.5 ft)
Installed powerelectric motor
Test depth6,000 m (20,000 ft)

Nautile is a crewed submersible owned by Ifremer, the French Research Institute for Exploitation of the Sea. Commissioned in 1984, the submersible can be operated at depths of up to 6 km (3.7 mi).

Nautile is capable of housing three people. It has a length of 8 m, still imaging cameras, two colour video cameras, and a number of flood lights. It is fitted with two robotic arms to allow remote manipulation. Nautile can stay under water for up to eight hours at a time. Two ships can act as mothership to Nautile: Pourquoi Pas? and Atalante. In its early days Nautile was launched from RV Nadir.

The vessel has been used to examine the wreck of the RMS Titanic and to search for the black boxes from Air France Flight 447[1]

See also


  1. ^ Air France Black Box Seeking Sub Is Titanic Veteran

External links

  • Media related to Nautile (submarine, 1984) at Wikimedia Commons
  • Nautile — specification from Ifremer website
  • Nautile: miniature submarine — BBC news article
  • Submarine to examine sunken oil tanker — New Scientist article
  • Le Nautile — technical information from Ifremer website (in French)