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Postgraduate student invents seaweed defense for submarines

(People's Daily Online)    18:03, October 31, 2016

Ma Lei, the inventor of seaweed defense

Zhang Zhaozhong, a retired rear admiral and TV commentator, has inspired a postgraduate student to invent a new device and apply for a national patent.

The device first came up in 2013, when Zhang discussed whether or not a U.S. nuclear submarine would enter the Yellow Sea on a CCTV program. During the broadcast, Zhang explained that since the water was only 50 meters deep, the submarine would likely become entangled in the seaweed cultivated by farmers living nearby. Zhang’s theory attracted online buzz and earned him a significant following.

Inspired by Zhang, the student, Ma Lei, designed an underwater propeller defense system. By impairing the propellers of invading submarines, much like the seaweed would do, the invention can prevent such seacraft from entering waters illegally. Ma applied for a national patent in 2014, which he enventually received on June 8, 2016.

Ma is currently studying Agricultural Machinery at Henan University of Science and Technology, and preparing for his PhD.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Zhang Tianrui, Bianji)

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