We are all familiar with all the potential strategies for navigating on water, or even the recent America’s Cup, where sailboats fly very low over water, most of the time on seaplane stilts. We have always known about the great sailing ships in the history of mankind: the Vikings, the Chinese Treasury Fleet, the Spanish Navy and even Columbus and the ship my ancestors arrived on; the Mayflower. Perhaps I would like to take this conversation to a higher level, actually to a lower level with a very radical new concept for the future. Let’s talk, shall we?
First, I think we need some introductory information. You see, there was an interesting article on the physics and science news scene on January 8, 2013 about underwater ocean flows, far below the surface, waves stretching hundreds of feet moving quite strongly. See the MIT News article; “Hidden Ocean Waves Show Their Power: Large-Scale Tests in the Laboratory and the South China Sea Reveal the Origin of Underwater Waves That Can Rise Hundreds of Feet”, by David L. Chandler. The satellite images that accompany that article say it all.
A very interesting investigation into underwater ocean wave flows with huge implications for our understanding of Earth’s oceans and fluid dynamics.
WOW, this is an amazing thing. Although not that surprising, it is a great discovery for us to better understand our oceans and their flows. Great work at Naval Research and MIT – This greatly improves our macro understanding of fluid dynamics. It not only helps us understand our oceans, but also our atmosphere and the potential ability to chart and understand currents and fluid dynamics on other planets. Think about how our efficiency with submarines and shipping will change. I can think of several ways.
Now, with all of this recent research and previous research from the US Navy, one might ask this question; Why not place giant devices like sails underwater in that flow, capturing and harnessing that dynamic force to propel the ship floating on the surface above? We are basically talking about an underwater sail. Remember that water is 750 times denser than air, so you should easily transport the boat traveling with that underwater current. A radical idea, you say? Certainly, but what’s wrong with that? Why not upgrade our future cargo ships, military vessels, or even space rocket launch pads or radar platforms? Think about it.