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Is this the Perfect Catamaran ?

"Winged technology has as many advantages for the 40-50 foot boat owner and
operator as it does for the superyacht operator. It's hands free, it's
safe, it's green and it has lower maintenance costs. It takes virtually no
manpower to keep a wing upright and to monitor the controls, yet traditional
soft sails require knowledgeable bodies to make sail changes and to trim
them. Thin-filmed solar sheets reduce fuel costs, because you're not running
engines all of the time to recharge batteries. It's a lot less expensive to
replace individual panels on wing elements than it is to replace old sails,"
said an enthusiastic Pete Melvin who is looking forward to seeing winged
multihull fleets of all sizes circling the globe.

Computer controled WingSailTM and sail-by-wire capability what are your thoughts?
 

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Telstar 28
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Wingsail—

First major problem with that design is weight aloft. That's got to add a lot of weight up high, where a catamaran, or for that matter any sailboat, can really least afford it.

Second major problem is you can't reef the sails. If you get caught out in a storm by that, you're toast.

Third, sail by wire is not a feasible reality when it comes to small sailboats, and even that beast is a small sailboat by my standards. The electrical/electronics on a small sailboat are a luxury and should not be relied upon for mission critical systems unless there is a manual backup.

Also, seeing as this is your first post here, I would highly recommend you read the POST on full disclosure, since I am guessing that you have some relationship to the designer or maker of that wingsail.

I'd also highly recommend you read the POST in my signature to help you get the most out of your time here. It has tips on searching sailnet, writing a good post, etc.. Welcome to the asylum.
 

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Looks like a standard M and M (Leopard) with a wishful piece of ghost tech stuck on in place of a mast and sail. With no foresail I bet it points just as poorly as it looks like it will.

The perfect catamaran for me is the one I already own.
 

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And yours is far less likely to get turtled in a storm. :)


BTW, it probably won't point for crap, but it probably won't go downwind all that well either...not much surface area there for the wind to catch.

Looks like a standard M and M (Leopard) with a wishful piece of ghost tech stuck on in place of a mast and sail. With no foresail I bet it points just as poorly as it looks like it will.

The perfect catamaran for me is the one I already own.
 

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To me it looks hideous and I share SD's concerns about weight aloft and what to do when things get nasty.
 

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Looks like an aeroplane with one wing in the water. Wonder at what wind speed it will kite ? Reminds me of that unfortunate crew on the South africa to Seattle delivery that were lost a year or two back off the Oregon coast. Sad.
 

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Well, I just hope they get some testing done on this thing before the descendants of Orville and Wilbur sue for a Kitty Hawk patent infringement. Looks like they may be missing a wing section and some tail assemblies.....Quick, someone check the museum!! But hey, it might work!? :confused: :confused:

Sailor's are SOOO skeptical..:D :D
 

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First, the patent on the Kitty Hawk is long expired...so that's not a problem. Who's being skeptical? Wing sails like that monstrosity do add a lot more weight aloft—that is a statement of fact. They are not reefable—that is a statement of fact. That design is likely to have poor downwind performance because it does not have enough surface area—that's a statement of fact. That design does away with the jib and is likely to point worse than the traditionally rigged catamaran it is loosely based on—is an opinion, but more than likely a correct one.

Well, I just hope they get some testing done on this thing before the descendants of Orville and Wilbur sue for a Kitty Hawk patent infringement. Looks like they may be missing a wing section and some tail assemblies.....Quick, someone check the museum!! But hey, it might work!? :confused: :confused:

Sailor's are SOOO skeptical..:D :D
 

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Didn't the USA America's cup team play with (and discard) a Wing design a while back? I think this is one of those things that looks good on paper but in practice is less than optimal.
 

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For a match racing boat, it might be workable, especially with the amount of logistical support the AC teams have. For a cruising boat, it's dead in the water...a complete non-starter. Not being able to control the conditions you'll be out in, as the AC teams can to a point, and being without significant support resources, a wing sail is a death sentence. It will cause the boat a lot of problems when it gets caught by a storm.

Didn't the USA America's cup team play with (and discard) a Wing design a while back? I think this is one of those things that looks good on paper but in practice is less than optimal.
 

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Didn't the USA America's cup team play with (and discard) a Wing design a while back? I think this is one of those things that looks good on paper but in practice is less than optimal.
In 1988, Dennis Connor successfully defended the America's Cup against KZ1 with a catamaran. He had two catamarans built, one with a solid-wing sail, which was reef-able by detonating explosive bolts that severed the top portion of the sail. I'm not positive, but I think in the end, they used the more traditional soft-sail version for the actual defense. But the wing-sail boat was said to be very fast.
 

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In 1988, Dennis Connor successfully defended the America's Cup against KZ1 with a catamaran. He had two catamarans built, one with a solid-wing sail, which was reef-able by detonating explosive bolts that severed the top portion of the sail.
OUCH! You definitely don't want to reef if you don't have to. LOL
 

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My previous post was tongue in cheek and I agree this cat looks more like a exercise in innovation, with what looks like a throw-back of a Wright brothers airfoil and tail feather control. But looking at it sure reminds me of a simple aircraft wing and flap control surface.

With the advent of light weight impregnated honeycomb flight surfaces used in commercial and military new generation aircraft, these airfoils are lighter and stronger than one might think. Still with numerous air, stress and motion sensors, weight aloft must be more than a concern. May be the reasoning behind the cat platform.

With all the weather, wind speed and directional inputs along with the instantaneous inputs and feed backs from all other sensors, I can see the possibility of a computer safely sailing a cat platform even in heavy weather without over stressing the rig. Aircraft use this method of "pinching" or control of flight very successfully with the same technology.

All that said, I would think this rig would be better suited to cruising. Well...even if racing...computer against computer???? When they take the "sailor" out of the sailing, what would be the point?

Oh and BTW, the cost would probably be prohibitive not to mention butt ugly!
 

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Cats are fast boats...
Had one pass me while I was working on San Diego Bay... Then it promptly capsized in front of me. I slowed down and maneuvered around him. Other small boats had gone to his assistance.
 

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Hmm .... interesting and, I agree butt ugly. However - wings could theoretically be as good for cruising as for racing.

With any sail you have to balance lift against drag. The big advantage of a wing is that it can have heaps less drag than a soft sail. For a cruiser, the key question would be does this rig have less drag than a heavily reefed soft sail or than a bare mast. I suspect you would be suprised by how low the drag on a good wing would be and it just well be feasible to just feather the wing in storm conditions. If (big if) this could be made to work, then you could have a very efficient and powerful rig that you could just switch off when the going got tough.

As for power and pointing - you can get as much as you want of each and more by simply having a high aspect rig. Low aspect rigs (necessary because of stability) lose most of their power over the tip which means you have to sail quite a way off the wind to generate enough lift to overcome the drag of the rig/wing. A glider wing will 'point' at only a degree or two because it is so long and you don't have the end losses.

Now .... if you could combine a nice high aspect rig which could give you all the power you need up wind and down with the ability to depower progressively and ultimately have no more drag than a bare mast when fully 'off', then you have the ultimate labour saving rig.

Mind - you'd probably need a computer to control it quickly and responsively enough to stop whatever platform you had attached it to from falling upside down.

I don't reckon this particular example will be any better than conventional - but there's a lot of future potential in wings - ask any jet pilot!! Could be the way to go for commercial shipping ?????
 

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of course, one problem with the design in the OP is that the mast probably has to be free-standing—with no stays or shrouds. This is much more difficult to do on a catamaran, where there really isn't a hull or keelson to attach the mast to. The loads mean that the bridgedeck has to be much heavier than it would be otherwise, and that contributes to a much higher center of gravity. IMHO, a wing mast setup like that would make far more sense on a large trimaran, where the mast could be stepped on the keelstrip of the main hull.
 

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Computer generated models are nice, but like talk, they are cheap. I say build one and let's see how it performs, and put any speculation (which is also cheap) to rest.
 

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I posted a pic of one of these winged cat here on SN over a year ago, the guy was end tied at the end of our dock.

The idea is nothing new ( according to the owner ) though there was only a couple on the water at the time. I think the guy had computer issues and as far as the weight goes, I think he said the weight was less than a std sail would have been.
 

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opps, I lied, it's a tri



 
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