Hydroptere, France's Flying Yacht
The speedy little number shown above is the Hydroptere, a 60-foot sailing yacht which is able to rise up and glide over waves instead of running through them allowing it to reach incredible speeds. When the breeze is high enough the boat acends out of the water on carbon fiber ailerons which stay in contact with the water while the rest of the boat hovers over the waves. The Times Online reports that the Hydroptère has crossed the Channel in just over half an hour which is not much more than it takes the Eurostar to go under it. The speedy yacht has also achieved two world records: 41.69 knots (48mph) over a distance of one mile, and 44.81 knots (51mph) over 500 meters. It has also gotten up to a top speed of 47.2 knots during training which is close to being another record. Alain Thébault, the yachtsman behind the project, hopes to be able to hit the 50 knot mark this winter. Can you imagine what it is like to sail on this yacht? It must be quite a rush.