How promising is the "air lubrication" idea to increase the speed of ships and reduce the consumption of fuel?
“Mitsubishi reduces friction on ship hulls by blowing bubbles:
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries has coupled the Mitsubishi Air Lubrication System (MALS) with a high-efficiency ship hull in the conceptual design for a container ship that the company claims would offer a reduction in CO2 emissions of 35 percent compared to conventional container carrier designs.
This isn’t the first time a layer of air has been proposed as a way to reduce the friction between a ship’s hull and the water. While MALS creates a layer of air bubbles by pumping air to the vessel’s bottom, researchers are also looking at developing superhydrophobic surfaces modeled on the water fern salvinia molesta, which is able to remain completely dry when submerged by trapping a layer of air on the surface of its leaves using tiny hairs.”
Any thoughts? Will this enable us to cross the Atlantic on a ship doing 100 mph?
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