Vitrovex Instrument Spheres
All stationary and autonomous instrumentation for observational activities in ocean research have two things in common. They need pressure-resistant housings and buoyancy to bring instruments safely back to the surface. The growing use of Vitrovex glass instrument spheres as an ideal solution for these requirements is a direct result of the benefits of glass, compared to other products and materials
- Immense strength to weight ratio
- Resistant to breaking – low thermal expansion coefficient
- Remarkable transparency and clarity with smooth, pore-free surface
- Inherently inexpensive
- Corrosion resistant, non-polluting and ecologically friendly
- Non-magnetic and electrically non-conductive
- Spheres can be made with a variety of high precise drill holes to accommodate connectors, feedthroughs, and a vacuum port for connection to electronics and batteries inside, or releases, sensors or other packages on the outside
- Radio and flashing light recovery beacons work effectively housed internally. GPS, ARGOS, or Iridium transceivers as well as VHF radio links penetrate the glass without problem. Status lights and LCD displays are visible before deployment.
- Control of instruments including data up/download may be done through the glass with hall effect, reed switches, infrared, bluetooth or just by commonly available electrical connectors
- High-quality Vitrovex glass can be polished to enhance optical properties for high-resolution digital cameras
Instrumentation spheres are available in a range of sizes between 4.5″ and 20″ in diameter with depth ratings varying from 6,700-12,000m. A range of protective shells are available for some of these spheres. Vitrovex cylinders can also be produced by Nautilus Marine Services, by sealing a glass cylinder between two hemispheres.
All instrument spheres are custom built to your specifications. Please contact one of our advisers to discuss your requirements further.