October 20, 2006
Antrim inflatable cat attracts attention
A curious looking cat has been getting a lot of attention since being spotted in the San Francisco Bay area and in the Port of Ilwaco, Wash.
The vessel received widespread attention when someone posted some pics on flickr.
Despite it's gray, hull it is not some hush hush ONR project. According to latitude38.com, it's been designed by yacht designer Jim Antrim of Antrim Design based on a concept by Ugo Conti of Advanced Marine Research, Inc.
Ugo Conti holds a U.S. patent issued last year for flexible ocean-going vessels with surface conforming hulls.
Antrim Design describes its vessel as an experimental 100 ft inflatable power cat and says the design was developed entirely with Autodesk Inventor Professional.
The vessel's 100-ft catamaran hulls are, in fact, inflatables and were reportedly manufactured by Wing Inflatables of Arcata, Calif.
The assemblies on the catamaran hulls that look like the way a windscreen wiper blade attaches to its arm are massive shock absorbers and support the structures from which the cabin is suspended.
The craft is said to be capable of cross-ocean voyages and a press conference is coming in a few weeks.