AirHull, with this hull the boat consumes half as much

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AirHull

What if with a good hull, your boat needed 30-50% less energy? From the Scandinavian group,
Nimbus AB
, here is an interesting study: AirHull. There are three players involved: Alukin, owned by Nimbus, and the two Norwegian companies PascalTechnologies (for hull technology) AS and
Evoy AS
(manufacturer of electric thrusters).

The goal? To make a hull that will go as far as reducing energy consumption by between 30 and 50 percent and, in this way, increase the boat’s range by 50 to 100 percent compared to using a conventional hull.

AirHull. Less energy to move the boat

Sustainability by boat. We often hear about it in terms of propulsion, electric and non-electric, but this is all closely related to the hulls. Much of the challenge is played out there because it is the efficient living work that makes the difference between consuming more or less. A target that appeals not only to manufacturers of electric motors, which have one of their main limitations in autonomy, but also to manufacturers of endothermics.

Shipowners today are also becoming increasingly fuel-conscious. Nimbus Groups AB has begun tests on a hull design (that of theAlukin OceanAir 8) to reduce the energy required for propulsion by 50 percent.

How? With AirHull technology, designed to reduce the energy requirements of boats
planing boats
. Given also the presence of Evoy, this solution is optimized for electric boating.

As a whole, AirHull consists of the cushion, transmission, and batteries. All components are integrated and regulated by the ride control system. The platform architecture is robust and scalable for boats from 6 meters to 30 meters.

An example of an “AirHull” hull with IPS propulsion system

The principle behind AirHull is not new. Creating a cushion of air on the live-work once the boat is on plane can reduce friction considerably. A discussion similar to that
of the steps in the hull
. What is different about the AirHull Pascal, then?

 

AirHull: the “revolutionary” hull

The hull in question is being developed aboard theAlukin OceanAir 8 with an Evoy thruster. The system uses a fan that conveys air between the live work and the water. Here a cushion is created that partially lifts the boat and reduces friction significantly. The idea is coined by the well-known Surface Effect Ships (SES), somewhere between a hovercraft and a catamaran. What is different about the AirHull Pascal? A special hull design and flexible flap system to keep air inside the cavity. The system is controlled by a run command that promises smooth and efficient movement of the boat.



Tests conducted on this type of hull have shown that the technology can reduce energy consumption by between 30 and 50 percent, increasing the boat’s range by 50 to 100 percent compared to using a conventional hull.

AirHull rendering

Alukin OceanAir 8

The focus on sustainability, in addition to hull efficiency, also goes through materials. In this case, the choice was to make an all-aluminum hull and superstructure, thus 100% recyclable. Nimbus Group’s stated goal is for the boats to have as little environmental impact as possible, both during production and during use.

Questions:

While waiting to see it live and, even better, try it out the main doubts may be about friction and maneuverability at low speeds, when not gliding. It will certainly also be interesting to learn more about the performance and behavior of the hull in rough seas.

 

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