How I Boarded a US NAVY NUCLEAR SUBMARINE in the Arctic (ICEX 2020) – Smarter Every Day 237

How I Boarded a US NAVY NUCLEAR SUBMARINE in the Arctic (ICEX 2020) – Smarter Every Day 237

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Note: The US Navy put no restrictions on me about what I should say or how I should present what I learned on this trip. Other than making sure my footage was cleared for Operational Security, I am free to say whatever I want about this experience.

Even though things are getting a bit difficult, The US Navy continues to provide stability and security. If you are interested to find out how you can join the Navy you can visit the website here:

There are tons of interesting career opportunities out there that I never knew about:

The Geophysical Institute at the University of Alaska Fairbanks offers incredible opportunities to research Arctic regions. They OWN A ROCKET RANGE. They do things like predict Aurora and monitor seismic and volcanic activity. I wish I knew about this when I was younger.

Check out the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

The US Navy has several options such as engineer, pilot, submariner, logistics, accountant, medical doctor, and even Public Affairs specialist. I continue to be impressed by people that I meed who spent time in the Navy. I worked with various people during the course of filming this video and they were all top notch.

I asked Sofia to write a little blurb about her job experience: Sofia Montalvo is an Ice Analyst at the US National Ice Center (USNIC). She studied meteorology at the University of Miami and atmospheric science at North Carolina State University, but did not know that mapping and forecasting sea ice for safety and navigation was a thing she could do. She loves her job for the mission it upholds: The USNIC Operations Department Analysts use remote sensing and model data to produce hemispheric, regional, and tailored ice and snow analyses. The Operations department is committed to the safety of navigation, protection of life and property, and government scientific research.


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66 Responses

  1. SmarterEveryDay says:

    Note: The US Navy put no restrictions on me about what I should say or how I should present what I learned on this trip. Other than making sure my footage was cleared for Operational Security, I am free to say whatever I want about this experience. And here is what I want to say:

    This was an absolutely incredible experience. The Navy personnel and Academic Research Scientists who kept me safe were incredibly professional. Every person I met was exceptional. Also, can I just say that the experience of going underway in a submarine was INCREDIBLE. I’m still trying to decide how I want to release the footage (when I receive the last of it after it’s been OPSEC cleared). Right now I’m leaning towards a series of videos similar to a Smarter Every Day Deep Dive on the submarines. The name is certainly fitting!

    I’ve also given a lot of thought to recent events here at home and around the world. It occurs to me that the US Navy brings stability and security to the world in a very unique way these days. I’m grateful that I had the opportunity to meet these individuals so I now know how professional these people are.

    I also want to say thank you to people who support Smarter Every Day on Patreon. My goal is to make intelligent, humble, respectful content. I was given approval for this experience provided I could purchase all the necessary cold weather gear and find a way to get there. Patrons of Smarter Every Day made that happen, so thank you to everyone who partners with me to make this kind of content by supporting at If you’re new here, please consider a sub! (lol)

    Warm Regards,

    • romestar says:

      @__ must be nice to have that type of access…

    • Mitch Grove says:

      I’d love to meet you in person and chat about my job, make a youtube video, and absolutely nerd out over nuclear power, but I’m afraid it’s all classified. I’m sure you met a few people of my same rate on that sub though, so I cant wait to see what y’all talked about in your next video!

    • Anton Wilzewski says:

      Something Witty
      Destin even was testing some military stuff before youtube. So what’s your point?

    • ugetridofit says:

      LOL, and you space guys want to go to Mars when we can barley handle living in the Arctic. You space guys crack me up.


      Thank You!!!!!!!! Great Vid!!!!!!!!

  2. Brandon Palazzo says:

    This channel has come a long way from “look at my chicken”

    • Platypus says:

      True dat

    • Martin Owens says:

      @LT. Marden Troops do not cause battlegrounds, so their location in peacetime is irrelevant.

    • Bryan St.Martin says:

      @Edmond Dantes People in the military rarely have any direct contact with MIC or the Politicians who make us look so bad.

    • LT. Marden says:

      @Martin Owens noone said they “cause” battle grounds, but they achieve both a proactive and reactive response as strategic military approach so thier location absolutley matter.

    • Will K says:

      @LT. Marden We need troops protecting those poppies in Afghanistan, otherwise the CIA drug trade won’t be able to protect Americans with heroin. Most people think it’s heroes that protect us. It’s actually heroin(s). You remember Afghanistan, right? It’s that country we invaded after supposedly a guy from a different country launched an attack while on dialysis in a cave in that country. That made that whole country our enemy. That country is still our enemy because reasons, but at least we are friends again with the Mujahadeen. You can see “The CIA taught me how to lie,” Mike Pompeo in a photo-op with the guy who trained the mastermind of 9/11 in 2019 if you care about those sort of things. It’s like McCain and ISIS though. It’s an Art of War thing us stupid civies don’t understand. Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.

      How does one become a Leftenent and not learn about the lobbies of the MIC and their influence over Washington? How did we go to war with Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq? We just lied, duh. Evidence is for prosecuting criminals, but when you are the criminal, you tend to avoid it.

      LT. Marden, why do all countries who go off the petro-dollar get regime changed? Why is war so profitable? Have you ever read the book by Smedley Butler? It’s been well-known how profitable war is for a long time. It’s just another way to keep the tax-cattle busy paying for global wars of terror.

      Any thoughts on the USS Liberty? Maybe Destin should do a “science” video on how many bullets it takes to sink a US communications ship? How many torpedoes? Do the murdered Americans add buoyancy?

  3. Kristian Perez says:

    yo shout out to Destin for being smart enough to have real, coherent, interesting n engaging conversation with literally anyone he comes across ANYWHERE!

    • The foam Farmer says:

      That’s what I was thinking he can have intellectual conversation with anyone and not sound stupid

    • Dasarathy Mutharasan says:

      Honestly, he really is able to connect with everyone so well, especially those awkward professor and PhD students.

    • Bam Holian says:

      I was going to comment something similar. Conversation with Andy was interesting from a communication perspective since Andy seems constantly surprised by Destin’s comprehension and ability to relate complex topics, but almost seems to have some sort of block preventing him from loosening up. No insult to Andy of course, but it’s interesting to look at the fact that somebody who is brilliant in a sort of niche scientific field might have difficulty communicating their knowledge or an explanation of their knowledge to normal people.
      Tl;dr Destin is a legend at taking complex topics making them understandable to normal people.

    • Daan Wmn says:

      This! 👏🏻

    • Oliver swack says:

      @Bam Holian my thoughts exactly, awesome that I’m not the only one who notices these things

  4. Alex Landherr says:

    I can’t help but think of “The Hunt for Red October”…

  5. Abdulhafiz Aljoudi says:

    You are right, this is a phenomenon caused by the refraction of light through ice crystals called “Sun Dogs”

  6. David Dayan says:

    Dang Destin left us hanging about how they land a plane on first year ice

  7. Synergy says:

    16:16 I felt second hand embarrassment when the guy left Dustin hanging 😂

  8. Grant Williams says:


    Destin: Hi, what’s your name?

    This is the reason we love him

  9. Fatal Creek says:

    Hey when will it get warm?

    Alaska: no we don’t do that here

    • Keoni says:

      It can has hit triple digits in Fairbanks in the summer. You gotta remember from lat may to early august, it’s just one long day. That’s where the joke that Alaskans only get one day of summer comes from

    • David Cox says:

      I live in Fairbanks and it’s in the mid 70°s with thunderstorms right now, in fact we hit 80° before many cities in the northern lower 48 did this year. This isn’t the land of constant cold, that’s the poles, this is the land of true extremes.

  10. jazz hands says:

    5:50 that guy looks like he could be conan o’Brien’s cousin

    • wiltbradley says:

      notice Conan’s brother needs a therapy lamp by his desk. His hair isn’t done yet either, because it’s still ” night” 🙂

  11. vrrdnt says:

    Hah, my Dad’s the pilot around the 3:13 mark.

  12. drewdane40 says:

    10:11 I didn’t expect to see anyone I knew in this video, but I forgot that Bob still works for ASL! We went to the Arctic Circle together on SCICEX 96 aboard the USS Pogy, back when we were both in the Navy. I have some photos of him dressed up as Santa at the north pole. One of my favorite human beings!

  13. djjazzyjeff123 says:

    Destin: So what is that you do here?
    Everyone: Shiver, mostly.

  14. Celsian says:

    13:33 uhhh, yes, yes. Nothing to see here, we are just University peoples, no special weapons experts or spies here. 😂

  15. Christopher King says:

    “Why are you in the artic?” “I’m trying to figure out strong _ice_ is.”

  16. VsKatshuma says:

    “For the first time in my life, I was going north of the Arctic Circle.”
    Me, a Finn: “Ah, yes, welcome home.”

  17. Noch Keiner says:

    It is kinda funny how everyone tries to explain his stuff like Dustin wouldnt understand but when he sums it up they all have the same “oh he knows his stuff” reaction.

    • Brandon Francey says:

      Generally, unless you are talking to other professionals, you need to set the bar low when talking to other people. Then based on their responses you can raise the level of techno speak. Especially when speaking with the media. Most of the media are looking for a story or a headline where the facts or details aren’t always important or the reporter just doesn’t have a clue so sometimes you need to choose your words carefully.

    • SweetDreamsAreMadeOfThese says:

      Well it’s also for all of us. I’m sure the commanders were told ahead of time that someone was doing a YouTube video on all this. So they’re expecting to lecture a bit about their own expertise.

    • JJ Tomeček says:

      To be fair, the simplification does help for the viewers

    • Paul Burgess says:

      @DoNE021 Dæston

    • alfie picton says:

      @DoNE021 Dust pan*

  18. sogerc1 says:

    Next on Smarter Every Day: I tried dropping a pencil on the ISS.

  19. Glxse says:

    *We get smarter every day*

    *Dustin gets cooler every day*

  20. Jonathan Spivey says:

    Destin is the only person who turns a scientist’s layman’s terms into technical terms for his audience.. I love it.

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