THE FUTURE OF COMMERCIAL SAILING SHIPS

Mechanically propelled ships using fossil fuel, particularly in liquid form, are so convenient to operate compared with what is still known about the operation of ships propelled by the wind that it is readily understood why there is a reluctance to reintroduce wind power in spite of the ever increasing price and an impending shortage of fuels, particularly those in liquid form. A lack of scientifically derived information is coupled with a lack of practical experience in the operation of sailing ships. Few exist today and most of these are operated by navies for training and ceremonial purposes. These factors explain why there is a reluctance on the part of shipowners to take what might appear to be a large step backwards in using the wind as the main motive power for ships. There is, nevertheless, some increasing interest and, more recently, experimental work has indicated the performance and practicality of new types of rigs for sailing ships. In addition, a few naval architects have prepared conceptual design studies and cost analyses for a number of types and sizes of commercial vessels. It has been concluded that a sailing ship of modern design and construction is practical and financially viable. Is there a future for the commercial sailing ship? This paper, based on the author's work on sailing ships for the South Western Pacific area, examines the question.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • From Man and Navigation, Summaries of the papers presented at the International Congress of the Institutes of Navigation held at the University of Sussex, Falmer, England, 10-14 Sept 1979.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Royal Institute of Navigation, England

    1 Kensington Gore
    London SW7,   England 
  • Authors:
    • Hood, W J
  • Publication Date: 1979

Media Info

  • Pagination: n.p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00197073
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: Conf Paper
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Sep 29 1979 12:00AM