Video: Underwater wheelchair is the best seat in the house

Artist turned aqua-woman Sue Austin transformed her wheelchair into a submersible with one hell of a view. You know what? A wheelchair is a lot more agile than I thought it'd be when acting as an underwater vehicle.

Austin, who has used a wheelchair since 1996, told BBC News that she got the idea after some scuba dive training a few years ago: "When we started talking to people about it, engineers were saying it wouldn't work, the wheelchair would go into a spin, it was not designed to go through water — but I was sure it would."

The proof is in the video-taped pudding. With a pair of underwater engines, a custom fin and a foot-operated rudder, she's able to glide around underwater with ease. She made the chair as a performance piece for "Creating the Spectacle!," which is a series of filmed and live artistic exhibitions that will feature Austin and her underwater chair.

It sounds like it could be a whole lot more than a piece in an art show, too. Austin tells the BBC that her chair has attracted the interest of professional divers to oceanographers. You know what? I want one, too. What a tranquil-looking way to explore watery depths. Her chair design is patent-pending, and she already has some upgrades in mind (such as a titanium frame to prevent rust).

Check it out in the video below.

Sue Austin, via CNET

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