Monday, October 10, 2005

Who was Josef Papp?

Cross posted by Lubber's Line at "Hundreds of Fathoms"

Josef Papp was a Hungarian-Canadian engineer who in 1966 claimed to have built the worlds fastest submarine with a speed of over 300 MPH.

Papp claimed to have built a unique jet propulsion and engine system that drove his home built submarine at such a high speed that it was enveloped in a bubble of air or supercavitation. He even wrote a book about the submarine's design, construction and sea trial titled "The Fastest Submarine".

The Fastest Submarine?

Papp's story is so fantastic that has been placed in the realm of hoaxes and frauds.

On August 11, 1966, after being missing for a few days from his home in Canada, Joseph Papp was picked up from a life raft by a fishing boat off Brest, France. Bruised, bloodied and dressed in a flight helmet and goggles Papp claims to have just bailed out of his high-speed experimental submarine. When questioned further Papp explains that he had traveled in his sub across the Atlantic solo and in just 13 hours. According to Papp, the submarine had become unstable during the voyage and after he bailed out it sank never to be found.

With no real evidence of his fantastic feat and two round trip plane tickets to France found in his pocket, Papp was quickly dismissed as a prankster.

Josef Papp who died in 1989, was described as an extremely paranoid, very unstable, selfish, and unpredictable man. But this odd man's life has other interesting controversies besides his submarine adventure. Papp was an inventor holding three US patents: "Method and Means for Generating Explosive Forces", "Method and Means of Converting Atomic Energy into Utilizable Kinetic Energy" and "Inert Gas Fuel, Fuel Preparation Apparatus and System for Extracting Useful Work from the Fuel". Joseph Papp's Noble Gas Engine is another fraud that may or may not be a fraud.

Just goes to show you, anyone interested in submarines and atomic energy may not have both oars in the water, but then again they may. Yet another unsolvable controversy ;-)


At 12:54 AM, Blogger Vigilis said...

Another intriguing post, Lubber. One cannot help being struck by the similarity of Papp's claims and Russia's Schkval torpedo claims.

Papp's detractors may also scoff at whackos alleging the Kursk had been conducting launch exercises involving the Schkval torpedo, capable of travelling underwater at 500kmh (310 mph).


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