The Portsmouth Historic Dockyard will reopen to the public on 24 August this year as a British Navy Museum. The main exhibit, the legendary battleship Victory, has undergone dramatic changes. After a century in dry dock, the crumbling wooden flagship will once again feel the pressure of water on its hull - but without a drop of moisture. To preserve the unique artifact, Victory was installed on a smart simulator of the aquatic environment.
In 1805, Vice Admiral Horatio Nelson won the Battle of Trafalgar, holding his flag on the Victory, which was already 40 years old. Immediately after the battle, the heavily damaged ship was sent for repairs, and it no longer took part in the battles. However, it broke many times, burned, was rammed and almost drowned. Only historical fame and respect for naval traditions helped to preserve the veteran, who is now 255 years old.
In 1922, the Victory was put to eternal anchorage in a dry dock, where it was constantly repaired, replacing the decayed wood with new one. Alas, such ships do not exist outside the water; under the pressure of their own weight, boards and beams sagged at a speed of 0.5 cm per year. By the beginning of the new millennium, the displacement of elements exceeded 20 cm, and the ship threatened to collapse completely. Therefore, a smart support system was developed for him.
Today Victory stands on 134 dynamic supports, each of which is equipped with a pressure sensor. The data is read every minute and the system corrects the position of all supports, carefully supporting the old case. The ship's keepers receive information about its integrity, and under the Victory keel, a gallery has been set up for tourists who will be able to see the legendary sailing ship from this side for the first time.