email I was asked to post
If anyone is really interested in high-speed ship design and the technical truths of just how fast a ship can go, I’d invite ya’ll to Google Daniel Savitsky and check out some of his papers on this very subject.
He’s the (Stephens) Emeritus Professor at the Stephens Institute of Technology and has done much of his work for DTMB of NSWC in development of ship design. His (numerous) papers for SNAME are notable for their clarity and understandability by readers of moderate technical training but whose expertise falls outside the genre. So in response to all the apochryphal story tellers, there is hydronamics and then there is aliens. Believe what ya want.
@Wdolson, Bill, you will probably get a hit on his SNAME article on High Speed Monohulls from 2003 (defining the design parameters of a 50kt logistics ship). Important not so much for the ship params, but he details propulsion specs and talks about cavitating, transcavitating, supercavitating props, their design, advantages, disadvantages, and has a very nice section on water-jet propulsion. It’s a bit dated and doesn’t have the latest and greatest from Germany and Japan, but it’s nevertheless valid for his design regime.
He is very good at identifying the various propulsor types, by name. His analyses aren’t so much dispositive as they are pointers to further study. Just take a look at the Newton-Rader trans cavitating prop, introduced in 1961, and tweaked ever since.