Trimaran would be revolutionary green lobster boat

It started out as a simple question: is there a feasible way to develop a better, greener lobster boat? After all, a lobster boat that would reduce fossil fuel use would help the environment and save a lobsterman money.

We formed a partnership in 2010 with Dr. Douglas Read, an Associate Professor at the Maine Maritime Academy. After a tremendous amount of input from fishermen, Dr. Read came up with a revolutionary green lobster boat design featuring a newly-patented trimaran hull form. The goal in the design was to significantly reduce fuel consumption (on the order of 20–25%), pollution, and operator impact while maintaining the large deck space and trap capacity needed for modern fishing practice.

A one-fifth scale model of the trimaran hull was successfully tank tested multiple times and tested in San Diego harbor, comparing its performance against a scale model of a 38’ Holland lobster boat, documenting the viability of the design. Throughout the years, the design has been exhibited at the Maine Fishermen’s Forum, to continue fishermen’s involvement in its development. Currently, Coastal Fisheries and the Maine Maritime Academy are partnering with The Landing School, a world-class boat building school in Arundel, Maine, to build a 21-foot prototype of the green lobster boat. Funding for constructing the prototype includes a grant from the Maine Economic Improvement Funds Small Campus Initiative of the University of Maine System. By mid-June 2018, we plan to put the prototype into the water and assess it with a fuel meter, measure the pitch and roll and most importantly, try it out on hauling traps.

If you would like to help support this exciting, innovative project, please contact Brian Thomas at bthomas@coastalfisheries.org.