You might suppose that a boat that can be transformed into a shipping container would have rather poor hydrodynamic properties. This is not the case with the Rivertrotters. Thanks to a catamaran-like hull, both hydrodynamic properties and stability are excellent.

Rivertrotter test

The first hydrodynamic tests for Rivertrotter hulls were carried out in 2006. Models at 1:10 scale were tested. One had a traditional barge-like hull (left image above), and others had underwater bodies shaped like catamarans with a cavity in the middle (right image above). The small wave form in the image to the right indicates less drag and better fuel efficiency. After several tests in which the hull features were carefully evaluated, a hull shape was identified that provides better hydrodynamic properties than traditional canal boats.

Hydrotest rivertrotter

The two models above are both built to Rivertrotter hull specifications. Their speed when the image was taken was equivalent to 4.2 knots on full-size boats. The upper model has the same hull shape as the full-sized prototype launched in 2010.

Rivertrotter tunel

Thanks to the catamaran-shaped hull, the boats achieve very good stability, far better for example than UK narrowboats.



A Seatrotter is a variety of a Rivertrotter. Just like a Rivertrotter it can be transformed into a shipping container following the patented principles, but its hull is designed for high speeds.

Seatrotter test

A 1:7 scale model of a Seatrotter was tested in 2007. The test showed that the boat starts planing at a speed of 16-18 knots, which is standard for most planing boats.

Seatrotter test

Additional tests with the Seatrotter design remain to be carried out. Among other things we will test how the hull reacts when equipped with inflatable longitudinal cushions of the type used by RIB models (Rigid Inflatable Boats).

Seatrotter under




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