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Russian Navy tests Panther Plus submersible

MOSCOW, April 24 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's Navy has successfully tested a new submersible, an aide to the Navy commander said Tuesday.

The Panther Plus remotely operated vehicle, made by Britain's Seaeye Marine, is designed to search for and examine sunken objects as well as perform other underwater missions, both on its own and together with divers or manned submersibles, at depths up to 1,000 meters (3,000 feet).

"The apparatus successfully submerged to a working depth of 1,000 meters and carried out a whole set of designed work," Igor Dygalo said.

The decision to buy the system from Britain was made after an incident with Russian submariners in the Bering Sea in August 2005, when Russia's AS-28 submersible became tangled in a fishing net at a depth of about 190 meters (about 620 feet).

It was rescued after three days when a British unmanned deep-sea rescue vehicle, the Scorpio 45, cut the net's cables and freed the Priz.

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