A hydroplane (or hydro, or thunderboat) is a fast motorboat, where the hull shape is such that at speed, the weight of the boat is supported by planing forces, rather than simple buoyancy.
A key aspect of hydroplanes is that they use the water they are on for lift rather than buoyancy, as well as for propulsion and steering: when travelling at high speed water is forced downwards by the bottom of the boat’s hull.
The water therefore exerts an equal and opposite force upwards, lifting the vast majority of the hull out of the water. This process, happening at the surface of the water, is known as ‘foiling‘.
Early hydroplanes had mostly straight lines and flat surfaces aside from the uniformly curved bow and sponsons. The curved bow was eventually replaced by what is known as a pickle fork bow, where a space is left between the front few feet of the sponsons.
Also, the centered single, vertical tail (similar to the ones on most modern airplanes) was gradually replaced by a horizontal stabilizer supported by vertical tails on either side of the boat. Later, as fine-tuning the hydrodynamics became more important, the bottoms of the main hull have subtle curves to give the best lift.
The “limited” classes of inboard hydroplane racing are organized under the name Inboard Powerboat Circuit. These classes utilize automotive power, as well as two-stroke power. There are races throughout the country from April to October. Many Unlimited drivers got their start in the “limited” classes.
The Global Hydroplanes market accounted for $XX Billion in 2022 and is anticipated to reach $XX Billion by 2030, registering a CAGR of XX% from 2023 to 2030.
Hydroplane: Using Hydrogen For More Sustainable Flights
Recently Launched , Hydroplane wants to be at the forefront of this sector and has already received support from the US Air Force which signed two contracts with Hydroplane to develop new technologies with governments and commercial aviation applications.
Hydroplane is at the moment working on a modular 200-kW (270 hp) hydrogen fuel cell powerplant for its experimental aircraft, general aviation, and urban air mobility markets.
What differentiates and makes Hydroplane’s fuel cell better compared to electric battery-powered alternatives is that it outperforms them in terms of endurance and it does so while also having much shorter times to refuel – refueling hydrogen takes a much shorter time compared to recharging a battery.
Furthermore, battery-powered aerial vehicles have a low payload fraction and thermal stability concerns.
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