Hovercraft and hydrofoils have been called "the biggest advance in water transport since steam took over from sail."
JANE'S SURFACE SKIMMERS, an invaluable aid to those whose interests lie in this field, describes and illustrates the products of more than 100 manufacturers and design groups in 23 different countries. The book also provides a world-wide survey of hovertrailers and barges, tracked air cushion vehicles and air riding materials handling equipment. It lists operators, licensing authorities, clubs and associations, and contains the only comprehensive glossary of ACV and hydrofoil engineering and operating terms. The problems of designing and building craft for an Arctic environment are dealt with at length in the 1973-74 edition in a special feature by E. K. Liberatore, one of the leading American ACV designers. This is of particular relevance since the US Department of Defense is at present planning a 1,000-ton patrol vehicle for operation in the Arctic. There are about 500 photographs and diagrams.
The JANE'S tradition began when Fred T. Jane, the son of a Devonshire vicar, produced the first edition of FIGHTING SHIPS in 1897. He was a technical journalist with a fascination for ships from an early age, and also wrote authoritative works on the Imperial Russian Navy and the Japanese Navy. Although initially sceptical about the potential of aircraft, Fred Jane produced in 1909 the first edition of ALL THE WORLD'S AIRCRAFT. He had written in the 1902 edition of FIGHTING SHIPS: "The idea that the conquest of the air will oust the warship is very general, but probably based on misconceptions." Jane died in 1916 when he was only in his early 50s, and his knowledge and experience were greatly missed in the fields where he had played such a valuable and active part. More than 40 years after ALL THE WORLD'S AIRCRAFT appeared, WORLD RAILWAYS was added to the series, followed by the more recent members, WEAPON SYSTEMS, FREIGHT CONTAINERS, SURFACE SKIMMERS and MAJOR COMPANIES of EUROPE. So, from a comparatively modest beginning, with the 215 pages of text and pen-and-ink drawings which made up the first edition of FIGHTING SHIPS, an internationally renowned series of reference books has emerged.
ACV Manufacturers and Design Groups ACV Operators
ACV Trailers and Heavy Lift Systems Air Cushion Landing Systems Tracked Skimmers
Air Cushion Applicators, Conveyors and Pallets
Hydrofoil Manufacturers and Design Groups
ACV and Hydrofoil Power Plants
A Select Bibliography
ACV and Hydrofoil Licensing Authorities
UK Civil ACV Registrations
Selected Amateur Built ACVs
ACV Clubs and Associations
ACV and Hydrofoil Consultants and Research Organisations
Glossary of ACV and Hydrofoil Terms