Are foils the new keels?

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by Floatything, Dec 24, 2023.

  1. Floatything
    Joined: Sep 2018
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    Floatything Junior Member

    When I saw the foiling AC75s for the first time in 2021 I was blown away. But then I realized that, much like Formula 1 cars, the tech would only be useful for racing. Or so I thought...

    Fast forward to 2023 when I read that a 111 foot super yacht is being built with the same foiling tech.
    We're astounded by this new foiling superyacht: Baltic 111 Raven - Yachting World https://www.yachtingworld.com/reviews/boat-tests/were-astounded-by-this-new-foiling-superyacht-baltic-111-raven

    Will this mark a new era for bilge keels? Or bilge foils?
     
  2. philSweet
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    philSweet Senior Member

    It depends how the seaworthiness and stability regs adapt. It's easier to meet these with bigger boats and they have more motivation to reduce draft and weight. Many large yachts have to send a team of divers down to install and remove keel extensions when they want to sail the thing in anger. It'll probably go the way of the airlines, where software and hydraulics are accepted as the primary means by which you stay right-side up.
     
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  3. jehardiman
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    jehardiman Senior Member

    Foils are not useful for 99% of the boats in the world. Like the article you listed, how many people need a foiling superyacht? A sparkly, shinely, niche gewgaw that excels in a very small portion of the design space.
     
  4. BMcF
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    BMcF Senior Member

    Thank goodness for those niches, though. I've managed to cheat a living out of supporting the vessels that inhabit them. 37 years and still counting... ;-)
     
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  5. philSweet
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    philSweet Senior Member

    @BMcF I had wondered if there has been much cross-pollination between the power boat foil folk and the blow boat foil folk. Sometimes you just get parallel and independent development when another niche with different players opens up.
     
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  6. BMcF
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    BMcF Senior Member

    Most certainly has been a lot of crossover between the sailing and powered hydrofoil craft in the design and control of the foils. In both directions; we're currently working on a powered foil-supported craft with the principal designer's previous notable success a sailing hydrofoil.

    But its also true that, as you suggested, there are independent parallel developments that share very little cross-pollination . That has always been true in the advanced marine vehicle world. Some projects leverage previous related experience while others do not.
     
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  7. CocoonCruisers
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    CocoonCruisers Junior Member

    Baltic Raven 111 is not a foiling yacht though, nor is the setup meant to work in the way it does in an America's Cup boat.
    As far as i understood, they are mostly just using dynamic lift as part of the righting moment, along with ballast and form stability, much like what Hugh Welbourn does in his DSS designs.
    Objective seems speed through lightness, motion comfort (anti-roll function of the lateral wing), and also just playfulness.
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2024
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  8. CocoonCruisers
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    CocoonCruisers Junior Member

    We too are actually experimenting just at the intersection.
    Imho there is at least as much potential for comfort as for performance/efficiency.
    What we struggle with are simplicity, reliability and cost questions - just as expected for novel stuff and in optimizations on vast amounts of parameters :)
    And yeah, it's not so easy to learn from others when the state of the art for larger boats develops in secretive racing and fancy superyachts.
    But this site has been immensely helpful for the basics, many thanks for that !
     
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