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2016 RINA – QinetiQ Maritime Innovation Award

The Maritime Innovation Award, which is presented in conjunction with QinetiQ to an individual or organisation,  recognises outstanding scientific or technological research in the areas of hydrodynamics, propulsion, structures and material, and which offers the potential to make significant improvements in the design, construction and operation of marine vessels and structures. The 2015 Award was presented to Hull Vane BV.

The Hull Vane consists of a hydrofoil-type appendage fixed at the stern of a ship.  It works by generating lift out of the upward flow under the aft ship. This lift is angled forward, and therefore has a horizontal thrust component pushing the vessel forward.  It introduces a pressure field which reduces the stern wave, and therefore the wavemaking resistance.  This is why it’s sometimes called the bulbous bow of the stern. The vertical component of the lift reduces the running trim and keeps the vessel more at even keel at higher speeds. In waves, the Hull Vane dampens the pitching and yawing motions and therefore reduces the added resistance caused by these ship motions, also improving comfort.

The Hull Vane was invented by the Dutch hydrodynamicist, Dr Peter Van Oossanen, and first fitted to a sailing yacht in 2003. Following extensive development, the first commercial application came in  2014 when fitted to a Fast Supply Intervention vessel and  a  motor yacht when reductions in power of over 20% were achieved.

The Hull Vane is suitable for ships designed for relatively high displacement speeds, such as  superyachts, patrol vessels, corvettes, frigates, certain offshore vessels, ferries, cruise ships, RoRo-vessels and container ships.

The simplicity and low cost of the hull vane is in marked contrast to the significant impact which it can have on operating costs and emissions. It is indeed a worthy recipient of the RINA – QinetiQ Maritime Innovation Award.

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