The Maritime Museum is building a replica of the Russian Empire's first wooden submarine, a two-person, human-powered vessel built and tested in Tallinn in 1854.
The submarine was constructed under the direction of Russian Empire military engineer Ottomar Gern. Maritime Museum Director Urmas Dresen said the idea to build a copy emerged several years ago.
"The diagram essential for recreating it was found in Russia just a few years ago, when Maritime Museum experts were preparing the Seaplane Harbor exhibition," he said in a press release.
The museum said it hopes to complete the replica by May 11 - the first anniversary of the opening of the critically acclaimed Seaplane Harbor - when the vessel is scheduled to be submerged into the sea for public viewing. It will remain in the water until the end of the summer, after which it will be exhibited on land.
Able to submerge to a depth of 2 meters, the original submarine provided air to the crew members through pipes that were held above water with the help of floats. However, the vessel, which was built to boost Tallinn's military defense, never went into service because it was not sufficiently sealed and it was difficult to steer, according to the Port of Tallinn's website.