Wingship Research and Development
You may think that WIG boats are a new invention when the opposite is true. The phenomenon of ground effect has already been known since the early days of aviation and just before the Second World War, some experimental WIG craft were built in Scandinavia.
It was not until the nineteen-sixties however, that the first serious wingships were developed. The contributions of two individuals were very significant: the Russian Rostislav Alexeiev and the German Alexander Lippisch. They independently worked on WIG ekranoplan km caspian sea monstertechnology with entirely different backgrounds, encountered the same problems and came to very different solutions. Alexeiev had a background as a ship designer and was obsessed by speed. He thought of a Wingship as a hydrofoil boat with its wings just above the surface, rather than submerged. Whereas Lippisch, an aeronautical engineer, was intrigued by the potential to increase the efficiency of aircraft by flying close to the surface. The influence of Alexeiev and Lippisch is still noticeable in most of the WIG boats developed since then. Anybody who knows about the history of WIG’s understands their development within the Russian Navy which led to the infamous “Caspian Sea Monster”.
When Linus Romey, the founder of Pacific Seaflight saw the need for high speed commuter transportation within the Inside Passage of Alaska, he researched many manufacturers and designers around the world in choosing a safe and stable craft. This process started over 9 years ago and this year, in 2012, the final designer was chosen.
The WSH-500, a new design by Hanno Fischer and manufactured by Wingship Technology based upon a proven design concept, was chosen for it’s superior structural integrity, effective use of 2 powerful engines, propulsors, state of the art technology and fuel efficient structural composites.
The history of this type of design is very important. If you research wingship manufacturers you will find most “proposed” designs are simply in the experimental stage and others have either gone out of business or have had a history of accidents. Pacific Seaflight has chosen this vessel because of it’s structural integrity and safe use proposed in the Alaskan waterways. Safety is our number one priority.
At the present time, Pacific Seaflight has brought together an experienced team of professionals from the fields of education, business development, public safety and maritime operations, including former members of the US Coast Guard. The team is working full-time to submit and secure all required Coast Guard certifications prior to the implementation of the routes we will be serving. We are also looking at cargo use, emergency medical transportation, law enforcement and military use.
In May of 2007, the team toured the Simulation Unit at the Maritime Training Institute in Seward, Alaska. With safe operations of the craft the number one priority, the team was able demo the simulation programs by piloting an oil tanker, a cruise ship and a large Coast Guard cutter to determine the best development plan for the creation of the Custom WIG Simulation Unit.
It was determined the required frame rate for a high speed simulation would probably not be met with the existing system. We will be working with programmers to create a proprietary simulation unit which will be operated by the Pacific Seaflight training team. The Pacific Seaflight training program will be the only WIG simulation unit of its kind in North America. All companies deploying WSH-500 wingships will need to have their operators trained under the Pacific Seaflight program, which will be accredited upon its approval by the US Coast Guard.
In July of 2008, the development team, led by Sr. Project Manager, CJ Hays, spent a week in Juneau meeting with local officials to conduct the final feasibility studies with regard to the proposed routes, regulatory compliance and to choose the location of the PSF International WIG Craft Training School.
After speaking to the local officials and conducting the site surveys, the feasibility study which was conducted by a third party contractor, confirmed the many years of planning by Mr. Romey was indeed going to be a successful transportation solution within the Inside Passage of SE Alaska.
Secondly a MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING (MOU) For a Workforce and Economic Development Partnership Between Pacific Seaflight And the School of Career Education University of Alaska Southeast, Juneau Campus (UAS) was established which would allow PSF to operate the training school within the University structure and would allow us to place the million dollar WIG Craft Simulator un their campus. This would be the ONLY WIG Craft Training School in North America. The design of the simulation system could be programmed in the future for any WIG craft training program.