BJ Parsons
Regarding whether the new Austal 102 trimaran and Is this the world's best ship design?, probably not. It is already becoming apparent with all of these Austal designs that they rely on fuel inefficient propulsion. Even with the new and improved Austal 102, in a few short years ahead, as the liquid fuel markets go through the roof, it will become apparent that any discretionary service and design such as this that is still so fuel inefficient will become obsolete in the economic environment that lies ahead. As a result it will become apparent that this is actually one of the world's worst ship designs.
Brad Parsons seems to be excessively critical about this design. I wonder if he is a boat designer? Anyway, power plants can easily be replaced with more efficient designs as they become available. The main design breakthrough is with the hulls. Perhaps Brad has something better to offer? I somehow doubt it.
Rob Irizarry
Brad - So what would you propose as an alternative means of powering such a craft?
Not quite sure where Brad gets his facts, but the engines used in the Austal 102 are MTU 20V 8000 diesels - by far the most economical form of powerplant to use in fast ocean-going vessels (much more efficient than turbines, and better suited to the high-speed application than diesel-electric). The specific fuel consumption of these motors is some 40% better than ANY equivalent car or truck diesel - at around 190g/KWh at high-speed cruise.
And of course being diesel Brads assertion about liquid fuel is, frankly, total drivel: With minor modifications the motors can even run on gas or agri-fuels.
I happen to work for a company that offers fuel control services for these engines, and they impress the heck out of us with their reliability and performance.
As an aside, IIRC the Littoral Combat Ship actually uses gas turbines alongside the diesels, and must be USN specification, so it is perhaps more pertinent for him to ask his own military why they choose to use less efficient engines...!
I am a student of ccna training program. You are right and on your side on this but what do you think we should do for this?
BJ Parsons
BTW, gas and agri-fuels will not be an answer, snave-ly.
Alex Kintz
Brad, I really dont know where you are going with this... you\'ve eliminated gas (I\'m presuming you mean gasoline, or petrol if you prefer), and blanketed all agri-fuels as being bad, so what does that leave? In the category of liquid fuels, this leaves only Diesel, which is already being used... very efficiently.
Ok, maybe you mean gaseous fuels, like natural gas. Oh wait, these are much less energy dense than liquid fuels, meaning that you have to either carry more to go the same distance (which increases load and decreases carrying capacity) or decrease range. Both of these options are counterproductive to making money, which is what ferries are all about. (as an aside, the only places that see a widespread use of natural gases are those that have such an abundance of it [like norway], that it is significantly cheaper to pump it out of the ground than shipping in oil, so much so that it offsets the inefficiency).
might you mean Hydrogen, the so-called \"green\" fuel? Hydrogen is the smallest element know to man, it is so tiny that it can literally pass right through metal, glass, carbon, basically all known materials. refrigeration is out because it uses more energy keeping it cool than the hydrogen can provide, even when used in a fuel cell (which is about 87% efficient, as opposed to combustion, which is about 40%) So there is no efficient way of storing it. And I\'m not going to even get into the problems with making, shipping, and fueling when using hydrogen.
Maybe solar? Can\'t be that, as solar cant provide a tenth of the power required for a vessel of this size. How about nuclear? Prohibitively expensive to build and maintain, and the eco-hippies will jump all over you like fleas.
So that leaves Diesel, the most energy efficient of all the liquid and gaseous fuels.
Which is why almost all commercial shipping uses it.
Alex Kintz
also, just an awesome design. the trimaran design is the best of all worlds, and has remarkable seakeeping and efficiency characteristics.
Ian Biner
Austal\'s trimaran is quite an achievement for a hull form that started life as \"the world\'s fastest cruise ship\" back in 2001.

After the 14m test model, the original design was 160m long, with more than 300 luxury cabins, most with private balconies.

Ah well... it seemed like a good idea at the time.
Maria Morales
I like this one better :)