Boat Design

New designs from our drawing board, and assorted thoughts on boat design in general.

Starwind 860: Range and efficiency

Among the key questions that must be answered in any powerboat's design phase are: How much power does it need, and how far can it go between gas docks?

The Starwind 860 trimaran that I'm currently working on started life as a series of computer simulations to answer these two questions. In today's post, I'll take you through some of these calculations and the logic that led to the final choices.

Starwind 860: Designing for mixed missions

It's a rare boat indeed that is tasked with one and only one mission. The degree of flexibility that's expected, though, varies greatly from boat to boat. My requirements for my next boat fall in the "does everything reasonably well" category, which necessitates a lot of head-scratching and balancing of trade-offs during the design phase.

Does electric drive make sense in a boat?

Electric cars are trendy these days. Hybrid electric systems are perhaps a little less exciting, but still get a large share of marketing attention. Boatbuilders have been getting in on the act too, but does it make sense to consider electric drive for a boat?

In today's article, I'll summarize three common powertrain architectures (battery electric, hybrid IC/electric and conventional IC engine) and outline the logic that might lead you to choose an electric drive system for your boat.

When are the new boat designs coming?

My handful of regular human readers, and my truckload of regular spambot readers, might be wondering why I haven't listed any new boat designs since the Almaguin 400 and 500.

The answer is that I'm currently in the (hopefully) final stages of a graduate degree in medical physics. That means a lot of time in the lab, and a lot of late nights and weekends spent poring over calculations, making figures, and writing up a thesis.