“It’s like removing the handbrake – suddenly everything gets smoother and faster in pure silence.” This gravity-defying US$40k catamaran rises completely out of the water at speed on a pair of hook-shaped hydrofoils. It looks like the work of David Copperfield, but it’s real, and it’s set to start a revolution in the sailing world.
Running away to sea has been a dream of escape for centuries, but unless you plan to be a tap dancer on a cruise ship, that door may be closing. In a report on the future of cargo shipping, Rolls-Royce
Vice President for Innovation, Engineering and Technology, Oskar Levander, outlines a vision for a time not far from now when freighters and other ships are unmanned robots that cruise the oceans under remote control by shore based captains.
Given the recent announcements of products like the ElectraFin
and the Rum Runner
, it certainly looks like we're in the midst of a stand-up paddleboarding gold rush. One of the latest gadgets to get in on the action, the Oar Board, lets you convert your board into a single scull rowing boat.
As stand-up paddleboards (SUPs) continue to gain popularity, we're seeing something happen with them that always seems to happen with popular items – manufacturers are augmenting them. Just this week we heard about a modular SUP
, which joins the ranks of ones that fold
, and that can be converted into a tent
. Now, Seattle-based Current Drives is offering an electric motor for SUPs, known as the ElectraFin.
There are at least two things that you can say about stand-up paddleboards, or SUPs: they're popular, and they're big. This means that while a lot of people may want one, they might not have room to store or transport it. That's why Sweden's Point 65 is introducing its Rum Runner modular SUP, that can be taken apart in seconds when not in use.
Using X-rays and other forms of radiation has been a standard tool for testing pipelines for decades, but until now it's been largely confined to factories and land-based pipelines instead of the deep seabed. That’s changing as GE adapts its medical X-ray systems to work in the crushing pressures of the deep oceans, as part of a remote-controlled submersible rig for examining pipelines in place.
At last month's Boot Dusseldorf show, we learned two things about electric boats. One, there aren't that many of them, and two, those that are available tend to be on the small side – as evidenced by day cruisers like the Joyboat
and Superiore Uno
. The latter point was true save for one exception: the 23-foot (6.9 m) long Energy 23cs from Slovenia's Alfastreet Marine. The 23cs is an (optionally) electric boat with sleeping quarters, plus a few other tricks up its sleeve.
Water-based jetpacking originally looked like an insane activity for the extremely rich and bored, but it has gradually gained in popularity. First, we saw the JetLev-Flyer
, then the Flyboard
, and now the X-Jetpack H3X Hydro. More than just a "me too" competitor in the water jetpack market, the H3X offers a few key evolutionary advantages for novices, families and daredevils alike.
Here's one you might not have heard before ... Whaddaya get when cross a hovercraft, an airboat and a pontoon boat? Give up? An ATASD, or Amphibious Trimaran with Aerostatic Discharge! OK, it's not that funny, but the vehicle itself is pretty cool. It can travel over virtually any surface, and should soon be heading into production.
Most water lovers would be happy to own a single boat, but in order to enjoy the many activities of the sea – fishing, water skiing, pleasure touring, etc. – they'd need an entire fleet ... or they'd need the all-new Ethos E30 from Milano's Azure Embark. Billed as the "first hybrid crossover boat," this innovative vessel uses a modular design to transform for all kinds of purposes.