An electric foiling powercat for transporting passengers

The directors of Vessev, a sustainable marine technology company based in New Zealand, are pros at innovation, and their all-carbon VS-9 readily demonstrates this fact...

Their compact catamaran is capable of carrying up to 10 passengers at a cruising speed of 25 knots - a flying rather than sailing experience that can last for 50 miles. The advantages of this 30-foot (9-meter) platform combined with foils, in addition to its compact size which allows it to be docked just about anywhere, are numerous: no polluting emissions, low power required to reach high speeds, lower cost of electricity compared with conventional fuels, and unprecedented comfort even in bigger seas.
Directly inspired by the Americas’ Cup racing boats, the VS-9’s foils enable it to sail completely above the waves. The powercat takes off at 18-19 knots, switches from Foil Assist to Full Foiling mode, and then sails with optimum efficiency between 22 and 25 knots. The foil stabilization systems come into operation at speeds as low as 12 knots, actively reducing pitching and rolling movements, even when the multihull is not fully on its foils and therefore in flight. For maximum durability, the VS-9’s foils are fully retractable, enabling the powercat to operate in shallow water and protecting the foils so that the vessel can be transported on a trailer.

The VS-9, currently undergoing final trials in Auckland, will be marketed by Fullers360, New Zealand’s largest ferry operator. This concept of an electric, foiling passenger ship could be adapted to larger vessels: a V-18 capable of carrying 100 passengers is on the drawing board.

Builder: Vessev
Length: 29’4” (8.95 m)
Displacement: 8,800 lbs (4 tonnes) fully laden
Maximum speed: 30 knots
Cruising speed: 25 knots
Range: up to 50 miles at 25 knots
Daily range: up to 150 miles with 3 charges from shorepower.
Capacity: 10 passengers
Crew: 1 skipper


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