Sunday, June 26, 2016

Flettner boat

Flettner boat

This is a yacht. At least it is a wind powered boat. 

Strictly speaking, this is a rotor or Flettner boat. Power is provided by the wind catching the central tube which spins powered by a motor in the hull. You can read more about the concept on Wikipedia. To be honest, the physics is a bit of a mystery but I'm fascinated. 

The boat appeared in our clubhouse along with the modelling bits and bobs from it's builder, Graham Bran, who has sadly died recently. I remember seeing him experiment with this in the water as well as his 2-tube follow up model. At the time we chatted about it which pointed me towards doing some research. 

For the moment I've tucked this boat away in store but one day I want to carry on his work. For the moment it's safe. Let's face it, I'm probably the only one in the club daft enough to want to give it a go!


Nick Brad said...

Interesting model and very interesting concept, something I'd never heard of before

J D Lowe said...

The Flettner rotor makes use of an aerodynamic phenomenon called the Magnus effect. Building vehicles that utilize the Magnus effect for propulsion has a long history with experimenters of various sorts. Back in the dark ages I worked for a company that was trying to build a blimp that made use of it. Here are a couple of posts about the project,

I find Flettner boats fascinating. What is the size of your model?

Phil Parker said...

The boat is about a metre long and the tube made of Pringles tubes.

Fascinated by the airship. Thanks for sharing those pages.