25 thoughts on “The Physics of Sailing – KQED QUEST”

  1. The Physics of Sailing

    Sailing history is about 500 years old. In the early days we thought that
    the sails can only push the boat in more or less one direction. Now we know
    that the sails can also lift the boat enabling it to go in almost any
    direction. Here are some physics of sailing to help you master the modern
    sail boat.

    KQED has run some tests to discover how modern sailing can profit from
    understanding how air travels!

  2. The Physics of Sailing

    Sailing history is about 500 years old. In the early days we thought that
    the sails can only push the boat in more or less one direction. Now we know
    that the sails can also lift the boat enabling it to go in almost any
    direction. Here are some physics of sailing to help you master the modern
    sail boat.

    KQED has run some tests to discover how modern sailing can profit from
    understanding how air travels!

  3. I was confused as to why a keel would generate lift, but I think I
    understand now. The keel typically has a teardrop shape but the shape is
    symmetrical and the keel does not *seem* to be upturned into the oncoming
    water like an airplane wing needs to be. You have to have one or other.
    Either you have to have an asymmetrical wing so that fluid travels faster
    over one surface, or you have to upturn the wing. A keel leans in the water
    but its leading edge is not upturned. However, the reason the keel does
    generate lateral lift is due to the ‘angle of attack’ of the boat. A
    sailboat does not travel ‘head on’ through the water. It travels at a
    slightly skewed angle off center (think moving forward while the hull is
    turned slightly to port or starboard). It’s this skewing that ‘upturns’ the
    keel wing and causes lift.

  4. The emphasis that that’s how “modern” sailing works is a bit stupid.
    Fore-and-aft rigs have been around for hundreds of years. Old vessels, even
    square riggers, could be fast and sail upwind. Replica tall ships have been
    know to outrun modern yachts fairly often.

  5. How can a #boat sail into the wind? A short introduction to the physics of
    #sailing » youtu.be/yqwb4HIrORM ⛵

  6. Good video about generating lift from the sails and countering it with lift
    from the keel… how to shape your sail so the tell tails are flying
    instead of hanging… hmmm, reminds me I need to clean up my tell tails so
    they aren’t so fuzzy!

  7. 7:47 watch the two sailboats and the motorboat, above the sailboat with the
    red sail – almost a bonus clip with a sail disaster, and a lesion by
    itself; How to NOT maneuver a boat in crowded situations. 

  8. The Physics of Sailing

    Sailing history is about 500 years old. In the early days we thought that
    the sails can only push the boat in more or less one direction. Now we know
    that the sails can also lift the boat enabling it to go in almost any
    direction. Here are some physics of sailing to help you master the modern
    sail boat.

    KQED has run some tests to discover how modern sailing can profit from
    understanding how air travels!

  9. Square riggers can go at about 210-240 degrees from the wind (but couldn’t
    as fast at that angle) and can tack over it, however a square rigged ship
    in the form of a frigate could sometimes outrun sloops 1/50 of the size due
    to square rig being better at holding air at 0-60 degrees of the winds
    direction…

    … lets put it this way, modern sails would never give enough wind to a
    Man O War…

  10. I’m a major sailor. I know a lot about sailing and have been doing it for
    some time… when I first watched this video it made me laugh.

  11. Hey guys. Here’s a neat video explaining the physics of sailing into the
    wind (old square sail ships couldn’t do this)

  12. Hard to take this seriously when the first thing they say is completely
    wrong. Square-rigged ships can most certainly sail into the wind. It’s true
    that they can’t lie as close to the wind as a fore-and-aft rigged ship, but
    they can tack.There’s no way Magellan, Drake etc. could have made it around
    the world in ships that only sailed with the wind. Getting around Cape Horn
    from east to west is impossible if you can’t sail your ship into the wind.

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