Triplane Rudder: better steering

Triplane RudderThe Triplane rudder is an innovative rudder concept that improves the ship’s stability when manoevring or changing speeds. The Triplane rudder consists of three vertical rudder surfaces fixed between top and bottom plates, having a single rudder stock.

The Triplane rudder was the result of a research project of Van Oossanen Naval Architects and IHC in 2009. In this project, the fundamental lift, drag and flow properties of different rudder concepts were researched in an attempt to develop a new rudder concept with at least the same properties as rudders with a trailing edge flap, but without any moving parts.

Wind tunnel tests and ship model tests were conducted to evaluate this rudder concept after the CFD calculations were completed, to validate the performance of this new concept. In all of these validation studies the Triplane rudder was compared with a rudder with a trailing edge flap. The ship model tests were carried out by MARIN, and they conclude the following:

  • The overshoot angles decrease significantly when applying the Triplane rudder, while the initial turning ability has remained the same;
  • The turning circle dimensions are not negatively influenced by the Triplane rudder in comparison to the flap rudder;
  • The directional stability (during pull-out) is increased when applying the Triplane rudder.

With the use of NACA sections the additional drag of the rudder is limited, with a proper alignment of the end plates the hull resistance can go down due to a positive interaction between the hull and rudder. The Triplane rudder is under international patent.

The design of the Triplane rudder can be adopted to specific design details as required.

  • Development of new type of high-lift rudder
  • Analysis and optimization
  • Analysis, selection and optimization of various types of rudders, development of new rudder concept for high-lift applications