Marine

Self-propelled lifesaving buoy zips out and retrieves drowning swimmers

Self-propelled lifesaving buoy...
Noras U-Safe: light enough to carry and throw around
Noras U-Safe: light enough to carry and throw around
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Noras U-Safe: Remote control thumbstick
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Noras U-Safe: Remote control thumbstick
Noras U-Safe: zips across the water to reach and retrieve a swimmer in distress
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Noras U-Safe: zips across the water to reach and retrieve a swimmer in distress
Noras U-Safe: brings swimmers back safely
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Noras U-Safe: brings swimmers back safely
Noras U-Safe: light enough to carry and throw around
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Noras U-Safe: light enough to carry and throw around
Noras U-Safe: controlled by a simple thumbstick
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Noras U-Safe: controlled by a simple thumbstick

Here's a nifty lifesaving idea from Noras Performance out of Portugal. U-Safe is a lifesaving buoy that can drive itself around in the water by remote control, meaning it can reach a victim quickly, and transport them to safety if need be.

The U-shaped U-safe is a battery powered device you can use in place of any lifesaving "donut." When it's thrown in the water, it propels itself using a pair of electric turbines that take in water and fire it out the back.

Noras U-Safe: controlled by a simple thumbstick
Noras U-Safe: controlled by a simple thumbstick

A remote control thumbstick gives an operator the ability to drive it as a small watercraft - and it's quite nippy as it makes its way across the water. It looks like about the quickest way we can imagine to get a piece of lifesaving gear out to a distressed person in the water, particularly in difficult surf.

Once a victim has been reached, the U-safe has enough power to help drag them back toward safety - which could make it very handy on large ships that might have to launch a rescue boat otherwise.

U SAFE® - Big Jump For Saving Lives - Short

Patent filings describe possible future iterations that might charge themselves through solar power, or that might automatically self-deploy and self-drive to the location of a crew member who's gone overboard with a special GPS locating device on their person.

Other ideas include a larger version with a seat that could be used for recreational purposes as well, and another that can also be used for surveillance purposes.

According to the Noras website, U-safe is "coming soon" and has been for over a year, so we'll keep an eye out for updates!

Source: Noras Performance

5 comments
Milton
clicked thinking it was going to be a joke, but am very impressed. Great work!
CAVUMark
Need to see some testing through surf.
guzmanchinky
Amazing!
ljaques
Very cool. That would be a lot faster than a lifeguard swimming out, so it has the benefit of time on its side. Or, if the swimmer was not moving or injured, it could haul the lifeguard out and bring both back to land. Kudos, Noras. P.S: Please redo the video and change "looses" to "loses". And create or use a single soundtrack for it, too. It's fairly professional and illustrative, otherwise. The only miss was the guy who tossed it in upside down. Oops!
JoeFrederick
Should have had this 50 years ago. Now all they need to make it perfect is: 1) make it self-righting if it's thrown in upside-down or it gets flipped by a wave, and 2) figure a way for it to safely grab an unconscious person and pull him back in.