unit that can be bolted on to any boat to provide thrust from the wind
It is a
sailing wing (similar to an aircraft wing), with a further surface a
"tail" which controls it. (As in an aircraft).
Controlled by the wind itself. There is no mainsheet.
Instead of fighting the wind, this system and the wind work together.
The wind knows best! and can control the rig better than a human!
The system finds the wind autonomously, and adjusts the angle of the
wing to provide the best thrust to the boat whatever direction the wind
It can do this on either tack without human intervention. Change of tack
Controlled by one lever "forward" "neutral" "reverse" Neutral is the
parking position and the wing can be left up when moored as it
weathervanes into the wind with less drag than a bare mast.
Reverse provides the same power and speed as forward.
Selecting reverse when going forward acts as a brake to stop the boat
almost immediately. (You would not do this in a car, but you can do it
here!). You can reverse out of difficult situations and carry out a
3-point turn in a narrow channel.
Provides forward thrust until almost head to wind on either tack.
There is no gybe - the rig rotates a full 360 degrees.
Going through the wind upwind or downwind is just a question of steering
through it - nothing to adjust or change.
As there is no deckwork - control can be from inside a cabin if the
weather is bad. No need to go outside. Thus taking away the need for
special wet weather clothing.
Except for mooring there are no ropes to pull and no mess of ropes on
the cockpit floor.
No winches are required.
For motorsailing the rig can be left in forward gear and it will help
the boat along if there is any wind without adjusting anything.
For an electric powered boat you have a speed switch which will switch
off the electric motor when the wind is providing a certain level of
thrust and switch it on again if the wind dies.
There are no electronics, no sensors, no servos, no power supply needed.
Because of this it is cheap and easy to build and understand. It is
simplicity - there is no "high tech" no exotic materials.
The helmsman does not need to concern him/herself where the wind is
coming from. The rig looks after all aspects of the sailing. He/she only
has to switch the power on - off - or reverse as necessary!
Amateur Yacht Research Society