The Necker Nymph is a three-person, open-cockpit submersible owned by the British billionaire entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson. The Necker Nymph is kept at his private island resort, Necker Island, in the Caribbean Sea. The Necker Nymph can be launched from shore using a specially designed trailer, or it can be launched and retrieved at sea by the Necker Belle, a 105-foot luxury catamaran which is also based at Necker Island.
The Necker Nymph submersible was built in 2010 by Hawkes Ocean Technologies at a cost of $690,000 (£415,000). It relies on the same underwater diving principle as the DeepFlight Merlin class of submersibles, meaning it is positively buoyant, and to remain underwater it must keep moving forward. Unlike conventional subs which use ballast to sink in the water, the Necker Nymph uses downward ‘lift’ on the wings to fly down to depth. In the event of a power failure the sub would simply float to the surface.
The Necker Nymph is 15-feet long and weighs roughly 750 kgs. It is capable of hydrobatic maneuvers, barrel rolls etc, and can dive up to 130 feet down. Dives can last for up to 2 hours. The occupants use standard scuba gear for breathing.