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'Versuchsgleitboot' experimental air-cushion boat (1915)


Photo



1915

Ships


Names Builders Commissioned Losses Transfers Discarding

'Versuchsgleitboot'

Marinearsenal Pola: 'Versuchsgleitboot'

10/1915: 'Versuchsgleitboot'

none

none

10/1916: 'Versuchsgleitboot'



Technical data


Displacement normal, t

7.6

Displacement full, t 
Length, m

13.0

Breadth, m

4.00

Draught, m0.4
No of shafts

2 + 1 vertical fan

Machinery

4 Austro-Daimler aero-engines + 1 Austro-Daimler aero-engine

Power, h. p.

480 + 65

Max speed, kts

32.6

Fuel, tpetrol
Endurance, nm(kts)120(30)
Armament

1 x 1 - 8.80, 2 - 356 TC (stern, nose-first)

Complement

5



Standard scale images


1915
1915


Graphics


1915
1915


Project history

The origin of the Versuchsgleitboot goes back to a private proposal of Lt Cdr Müller-Thomamuehl concerning a hovercraft, the actual experimental prototype being a modified design with a wooden rectangular hull of spindle-shaped design, with the bottom divided, by a vertical step, into planing and hover sections. To ensure eddyless air-injection a swallow tail-shaped duct was situated at the vertical step. The fan was situated in the forward section of the rectangular hull and produced an air-cushion under the hovering part of the bottom. Skirts at both sides prevented the air from escaping but there were no skirts at stem and stern. The main armament consisted of two torpedoes, each in an open chute arranged for launching over the stern by means of compressed air. Three small 6kg (131b) DCs were added later.

Modernizations

1916: + 3 DC

Naval service

Launched on 1 September 1915 it underwent extensive trials with different propeller types but was considered unworthy of further development due to a number of technical deficiencies. What really was needed was a fast, armoured MTB, so the Versuchsgleitboot was cannibalized and finally scrapped during the following years.