What Are Seaskimmers
The purpose of this section is to provide information regarding the craft and an explanation of the aerodynamic principle that it relies on, namely the wing-in-ground effect (WIG). Once this principle is understood then the attractiveness of Sea Skimming WIG craft for an owner or operator will become evident especially once the operating costs and speed of a Sea Skimmer is compared to an aircraft or a boat of similar cargo or passenger capacity.Sea Skimming craft are boats both legally and operationally, despite the fact that they do not have contact with the water surface when they are operating at their cruise speed. WIG effect technology is simply described as the phenomenon of increased lift that occurs when an aerofoil is brought into close proximity to the earth’s surface (water or land). This phenomenon allows a specially designed craft to operate very efficiently.
Ground effect increases the lift of the wing
Benefits of WIG Technology
The benefits of WIG technology are based around the commercial efficiency issues, in that a Sea Skimming craft can travel further on the same fuel and with the same payload as an aircraft and much faster than a ship. This enables Sea Skimmers to fill the gap between low cost, slow sea freight and fast, yet high cost air freight. Some other advantages of Sea Skimming WIG vessels are:
· Sea Skimmers are built as marine craft even though they fly (just a few meters above the surface), so the manufacturing costs are more inline with marine hulls and not aircraft hulls.
· Sea Skimmers are surveyed by the International Maritime Organisation as boats not aircraft, this is a major cost saving. For example, a 6 seat aircraft would cost millions of A$ for certification, whereas certification of a 6 seat boat would cost about A$100,000.
· True safety as well as passenger perception of safety is enhanced as a result of the fact that wherever the vessel goes its runway is closely below it at all times.
· Passenger comfort is considerably greater than fast boats, because there is minimal movement from the waves (no sea sickness).
· Passenger comfort is higher than aircraft, because Sea Skimmers have more interior space than weight carrying capacity, so every seat will be equal to an airline first class, but at a much less expensive price than economy.
· Sea Skimmers are not limited in dimension by airport size or infrastructure.
The technology used in the Sea Eagle marine craft has significant advantages over other Sea Skimming craft, in that its power requirement is significantly lower for a given payload. This advantage further improves operational efficiency and results in lower operating costs.
From the market research it was concluded that the most appropriate
new product to initially introduce to the market would be a small
Sea Skimmers for recreational, light commercial use and patrol
duties. Although a significantly higher sales turnover is expected
for larger 20 seat Sea Skimmers, it was decided to commercialize the
six seat Sea Eagle first, as the time to market for this size vessel
is relatively short. The Sea Eagle 6 was developed, produced and
tested by our
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