Saturday 19 May 2007

What Is This Handsome Looking Brute

Its the SeaPhantom which has helicopter speed but a powerboat price and its creators are attempting to render the 'Blue Highways' (vid) of the world a reality. Gyroscopes, computers and an aerodynamic lifting system make this one fast and stable sea craft. And it’s supposed to be economical too. Mind you, whichever way you slice the onion, moving fast across water is going to cost money. Apparently you can have one now for a cool half million.

The main body flies approximately four feet above average wave crests on three-point shock dampened foils. Its total dry weight is approximately 1750 pounds (800 kg). The current prototype engine configuration puts a standard Mercury race outboard out on the tail.

Future designs will scale our proprietary technology to the size of 1930's DC3s: 18 - 24 passenger models with projected cruise speeds of 150 knots, flying 8 to 12 feet above the average wave crests, making scheduled travel with impunity, across, for example, the Gulf of Mexico, Coastal US routes, island-to-island throughout the Caribbean, or South Pacific Islands...
Imagine comfortable speed at sea. Traveling at 85 knots (100 mph) without bone jarring wave impacts. Using a fraction of the horsepower of today’s so called fast boats. Speed nearly as fast as a helicopter. But as cheap to operate as an offshore powerboat. Simple to operate. Simple to maintain. Personal, military, commercial fleet travel on the Blue Highways of the open sea where there are no speed limits. (.pdf)
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