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Geophysical Prospecting, 2001, 49, 735745

J.H. Hagedoorn inventing the Hapa: A review of a geophysicist's `other' work and how it inspired others
Theodor Schmidt*
TO Engineering, Ortbuhl 44, 3612 Steffisburg, Switzerland Received July 2001, revision accepted July 2001

ABSTRACT This paper describes J.G. Hagedoorn's work on `ultimate sailing' the combination of a manned kite and a water kite called a Hapa, constituting a minimal sailing system and the way others have taken up his challenge to sail while suspended from a kite. Hagedoorn's goal has not been entirely achieved, but `near' and partial solutions have been reached. Kite-Hapa-sailing continues to pose a `Holy Grail' type challenge to many kite-sailors.

I N T R O D U C T I O N : E A R LY H A PA S Besides his professional geophysical work, Hagedoorn had another scientific interest, which he pursued as an amateur. It is a field so exceptional that he was able not only to invent it and give it a name, but also to inspire dozens of enthusiasts and become known to thousands of people outside geophysics, and that with only two publications! The title of his 40-page principal monograph, Ultimate Sailing (Hagedoorn 1971), describes the subject. Hagedoorn managed to reduce the concept of the sailing boat, which usually consists of a hull, a keel or centreboard, a mast and a sail, to a simpler system consisting of a kite in the air, a line and a kind of water-kite for which he coined the name `Hapa' (HAgedoorn-PAravane), liking its vaguely Polynesian sound. The components of Hagedoorn's concept were already known. Kites have been used to propel boats for many years, beginning perhaps with the above-mentioned Polynesians and later the great thinker Benjamin Franklin, then in earnest by the Englishman George Pocock (1827/1851), who mainly undertook long journeys in southern England by means of his kite-powered carriage and who described man-lifting kites for nautical use. More recently kites have been used by members of the Amateur Yacht Research Society (AYRS) with whom Hagedoorn corresponded. His Hapa or water-kite is
*E-mail: tschmidt@mus.ch

also not entirely original, similar devices having been used for mine-sweeping, fishing and oceanographic work. Many synonyms are in use, such as paravane and `chien-de-mer' (sea dog). As early as 1845, a Dr Collodon operated a model kite-Hapa on Lake Geneva (see Fig. 1). Burgess (1939/1995) suggested sailing buoyant airships with paravanes. O.W. Neumark flew buoyant kites from motorboats, but lacked any sort of Hapa (Morwood 1961). Hagedoorn was the first to suggest coupling such a device to a manned kite, instantly forming a minimal sailing system, but still a proper one capable of travelling upwind. Airinflated kites known as parafoils had just been invented and were used by parachutists to glide through the air a distance several times greater than the altitude from which they jumped. Hagedoorn's concept was to equip such aviators with his Hapas, which they could fling into the water while still flying and, with sufficient wind, immediately begin to sail in this new mode, becoming `aquaviators' capable of unlimited travel without even getting wet, as long as the wind lasted. The Hapa was thus not to be merely a sailing novelty or thought experiment, but a device for rescue and possible military use. In the early 1970s, Professor Jerzy Wolfe and his students at the Polish Aerodynamics Institute in Warsaw built and flew a `paravane hang glider', apparently with many crashes, but I do not know whether there was any connection between Wolfe and Hagedoorn (Bradfield 1979).

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Figure 1 Collodon's self-steering kite-Hapa, 1845.

After having established the theoretical feasibility of the Hapa, Hagedoorn undertook to make a scale prototype himself. The first Hapa was a beautiful piece of work but it simply did not work. The second model was disc-shaped to avoid directional instability. With this prototype, drag tests were carried out in a local canal (see Fig. 2). Hagedoorn drove his car along the canal and the line was held by one of his sons. At low speeds, the system was stable. Thanks to a forward mounting, the Hapa was more or less at right angles to the direction of propagation. At higher speeds, however, the kite started to oscillate and the Hapa jumped out of the water. An improvement was achieved by allowing the disc to rotate freely, without creating a torque. The other end of the system consisted of a parafoil. Hagedoorn went to the US for its purchase, but it came without any instructions. A crash landing on the heath caused him to perform his duties as professor with a neck-band for several weeks. Another series of tests was conducted, in which one of his sons was equipped with a parafoil and pulled in the air behind a motorboat. This once resulted in a spectacular splash from about 30 m height but at least it was better to land in the water than on dry land. The Hagedoorns faced the same problems as the very first designers/flyers of aeroplanes. Not only had they to build a plane, but they also had to learn to fly it. The idea of launching the Hapa when the flyer is pulled up behind a boat, thus achieving forward movement, was alas not achieved as the instability problems persisted. A recent

picture of the last and best-performing prototype is shown in Fig. 3. Realizing that further progress and development could be made only with more human resources, Hagedoorn put pen to paper and produced the manuscript Ultimate Sailing in 1971. In the years thereafter Hagedoorn tried to arouse interest amongst professional maritime journals and institutions, without success. He then turned to Scientific American, which published a synopsis of his manuscript in 1975. Belatedly, in 1994, the full manuscript was published by the Amateur Yacht Research Society. This paper gives more details of the development of the Hapa and describes some of the ways it has been implemented and put to use. DEVELOPMENT AND IMPROVEMENT OF T H E H A PA Hagedoorn developed his idea of the sailing Hapa by first examining a type of sailing craft known as the Pacific, or flying, proa. This is a slim Micronesian outrigger craft which is normally stabilized by the crew balancing the forces of the wind by climbing on the outrigger `flying' just above or on the water-surface. Members of the AYRS, notably Edmond Bruce (Bruce and Morss 1965/1970/1976), realized that a single hydrofoil attached to the outrigger could perfectly balance all sailing forces in steady-state conditions.

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Figure 2 Hagedoorn's second Hapa in action in the Oegstgeester Kanaal, about 1972 (provided by the Hagedoorn family).

However, the sea is not `steady-state' and the craft remains a highly capsizable object. Hagedoorn suggested using a curved foil as shown in Fig. 4, but quickly went on to suggest that by separating the structure of the sail and the hydrofoil, all forces could pass through a single line, provided the hydrofoil could be induced to keep its required attitude and angle by itself, following the water-surface faithfully on its leash. He was especially worried about the Hapa's pitch angle, i.e. its rotation around the axis of the connecting line, and thus suggested not only using a perfectly circular meniscus-shaped hydrofoil, but also attaching this through a ball-bearing, so that no pitching moment whatsoever could arise from the foil. A float is still needed in order to ensure the proper depth of the foil just below the surface, and a fin on the float is required so that it will track in the proper direction. Figure 5 shows Hagedoorn's drawing of his Hapa and the way it might be used to stabilize a sailing dinghy. Hagedoorn's next step was to free the boat's working parts the airfoil (sail) and the hydrofoil (Hapa) completely, by replacing the sail with a kite, doing away with the hull and mast entirely and suspending the pilot from the kite. Figure 6 shows the final concept developed in Ultimate Sailing. Hagedoorn provided a detailed theoretical basis and conjectured various ways in which the system might actually be

used in practice. Then, with the publication of the article in Scientific American (Hagedoorn 1975), more people took up the challenge. I read this article while a student and immediately built a Hapa to Hagedoorn's specification. I spent many hours experimenting with it in the strong current of the Rhine at Basel, trying to improve its efficiency, expressed by the angle between its line and the normal to the direction of travel or flow (the drag angle). For an `ideal' Hapa, this would be 08. A circular foil is intrinsically inferior in this respect to more slender, higher aspect ratio foils. Therefore I made wing- and hoop-shaped Hapas and experimented with a depth sensor designed to keep them just below the surface at all times. The problem with these more efficient Hapas was that they would suddenly become unstable if pulled too hard or fast, either diving to the bottom or jumping in the air. Still, they worked and achieved drag angles as low as 188. I attached kites to these Hapas and sailed them across ponds, achieving Hagedoorn's goal in a very small (unmanned) way. After finishing my degree in physical oceanography in Wales, I would have liked to develop kite-Hapas as autonomous sailing oceanographic instruments, but was unable to get very far with this. I had been corresponding sporadically with Hagedoorn, but letters always took many months and, most

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Figure 3 Hagedoorn's last Hapa working prototype (provided by the Hagedoorn family).

unfortunately, everyone in the AYRS believed a rumour that he had died many years before his actual death so it is possible that he never knew about the very slowly ripening fruits of his work in this field. In 1980 I went to a symposium on wind propulsion of commercial ships, where I met kite manufacturer Keith Stewart, who immediately offered me a job designing Hapas! Stewart was in contact with AYRS member Didier Costes from Paris, who had built some very efficient Hapas indeed (drag angle of about 108), wanting to use these to stabilize and speed up his highly experimental triscaph Exoplan. Costes' Hapas, like Hagedoorn's original, had to be manually flipped in order to change direction, and since Stewart was interested in selling autonomous sailing devices, I was installed in Dorset designing remote-controlled Hapas! Both these and the kites were radio controlled. This was not required for steering, as the kite-Hapa combination is automatically self-steering, but rather for changing the course: all points of sailing up to `fine reach' (slightly upwind) were available. Downwind was achieved by setting the kite and the Hapa on opposite tacks. Figures 7 and 8 show some of these devices in use (Schmidt 1984, 1985/1995, 1991). The usual type of Hapa-symmetry did not allow a kiteHapa to tack: unlike a sailing boat there was too little inertia to carry it through the eye of the wind. I therefore went back to the proa-type symmetry and constructed a bi-directional Hapa which simply changed direction by shifting the point of

line attachment also by remote control and which also had a `pure drag mode' for drifting slowly downwind with the wing stalled. Successful as these experiments were, the devices were too small to support a pilot; the most that could be carried aloft was a camera. Quite independently, William Roeseler (Roeseler and Funston 1979) suggested sailing sailplanes on the sea using Hapas, which he called `fish'. He later tried this in practice and was able to fly devices from motorboats, but not actually sail them. F U R T H E R H A PA E X P E R I M E N T S A keen follower of the Hapa concept was Roger Glencross, a London accountant who wanted to achieve Hagedoorn's aim in practice: that of sailing a manned kite-Hapa, with the pilot supported in the air. In Ultimate Sailing, Hagedoorn had shown this to be theoretically feasible, but much work remained to make it work in practice, the major hindrance being the issue of safety. The combination of heights, strong forces, unstable components, tangled lines and water is a formidable opponent. Glencross started building Hapas of all shapes and sizes, testing them on a pond. Besides this, he purchased a hang-glider and later several paragliding canopies, now much more advanced and cheaper than the first Jalbert parafoil that Hagedoorn used. I helped him fly them in the wind in Portland Harbour, always only a short distance above the ground, but enough to prove that with a

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Figure 4 The flying proa stabilized by a curved hydrofoil (from Ultimate Sailing).

steady wind of the right strength and a Hapa of the right dimensions, it would be quite possible to sail airborne at roughly right angles to the wind. One day we were nearly successful: we had tried out one of Glencross's Hapas from a motorboat and measured its forces and angles. The same day we produced the same forces and angles suspended from the paraglider in the wind. However, we never got the two devices together under the required conditions. Every year Glencross gets a little closer, but the combination of conditions needed continues to elude him: a suitable wind window (not too much and not too little), the right state of the tide, a safety boat in readiness, the equipment in good condition and enough competent helpers (Glencross 1993, 1996; Kitson 1994; Schmidt 1994/1996). The main problem is getting started. I do not think anybody has yet seriously contemplated Hagedoorn's ultimate concept of launching the Hapa while free-flying in the air, but even simpler methods, like starting from a motorboat, require considerable resources and experience. The only method useful in practice would be for the pilot to start unaided in the water or at least from shore. This would require entering the water with the Hapa ready to be released from a backpack or some similar arrangement. This is not very complicated, but nobody seems yet to have tried it. What has been achieved is to travel sitting on a commercial

hydrofoil called an `air chair' while being propelled by a kite instead of the usual ski-boat. Cory Roeseler (1997), the son of W. Roeseler and the first expert kite water-skier, described this in detail. In contrast to Hagedoorn's scheme, the hydrofoil does not pull, but rather supports the pilot, but Roeseler described brief uncontrolled excursions in `Hagedoorn-mode', resulting in some back injuries, and has understandably been reluctant to continue this line of experimentation. Great progress has also been made by kite-surfers who rush around at great speeds in perfect control, sometimes also leaping high into the air, momentarily becoming airsupported. This has also been achieved on snow by Dieter Strasilla, Andrea Kuhn and Wolf Beringer, who also experimented with sailing airborne, with and without `snow-Hapas' in the form of a second skier (Hanschke 1976; Beringer 1996). So, gradually, Hagedoorn's still elusive goal is approached from all sides, and all that is really required to achieve it is for somebody to combine a kitesurfer's skills and boldness, the knowledge accumulated by Hagedoorn and others, and Glencrossian perseverance. H A PA S F O R S A I L I N G With `ultimate sailing' in mind, Hagedoorn dwelt only briefly

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Figure 5 A sailing boat stabilized by a Hapa (from Ultimate Sailing).

on using Hapas for stabilizing actual sailing craft. Others have investigated this use, in order to carry more sail and achieve higher speeds without acrobatics or large outrigger structures. In Fig. 9, I am shown in a folding canoe using a Costes Hapa. Many years later, Robert Biegler (2001) Hapa-sailed the same canoe extensively and methodically. The main experimenter in Hapa stabilization is Paul Ashford (1990, 1994), whose article `Seadogs for monohulls' is published with Hagedoorn's reprint of Ultimate Sailing in AYRS Publication No. 114 (1994). Ashford compared Hapas (which he calls `doggers') with fixed hydrofoils and ballast. He tested and measured numerous models, which achieved drag angles as low as 108, and also full-sized Hapas intended for his 7 m yacht. His work continues. Costes (1994/1996, 1995) also continued to improve and patent his `chiens-de-mer', intending to use them for sailing with blimps or Zeppelins, as shown in Fig. 10. Some fullscale work with the airship `Zeppy-2' actually commenced (apparently at the cost of a broken leg), but this was too

rounded and had too little wing surface to sail upwind. A design intended to correct this, his `planostat', was never built. Hapa design continues to fascinate, and one of the latest models by John Perry is pictured in a paper by Quinton (2001).

CONCLUSIONS AND OUTLOOK When I first read Ultimate Sailing 25 years ago, I was convinced that I would be able to build and `aquaviate' with a personal Hagedoornian kite-Hapa within a short time. However, this has not been the case because sound engineering and physics, dedication and perseverance, encouragement and money, skill and daring are all required, and so far all experimenters have been lacking in at least one of these items. What is the present state of the art and what is needed finally to achieve Hagedoorn's goal or even more?

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Figure 6 Ultimate sailing: the aquaviator sailing by parafoil and Hapa (from Ultimate Sailing).

The system Hagedoorn's classic system uses a kite attached to the pilot by short lines and a Hapa on a longer line. One of the main reasons that this has not yet been implemented is the safety concern: a high perceived risk for a moderate perceived gain. Also, the system will not work in light winds and requires considerable logistics at least to begin with. The extended system I would like to see would allow the pilot to be attached anywhere on the line between kite and Hapa and would include a boat-like nacelle for winds when not enough force is available to lift the pilot's weight. Long lines allow the kite to be used at an elevated altitude with more wind. Remote-controlled systems have already been implemented; the extended system would mainly involve scaling these up sufficiently to carry a person and equipment. Adding propellers and electrical power systems to the Hapa and perhaps also to the kite would facilitate launchings and extend the possible range of operation. All this is possible today since the components exist, but it requires

somebody to build them large enough and to put them together.

The kite Parafoils as used by Hagedoorn and Glencross have come a long way. They can now be launched in very little wind and are very efficient (high lift-to-drag ratio). However, once in the water they cannot easily be launched again. Kite-surfers have now developed waterproof and water-launchable kites, but they use up to four lines and little attention has been given to launching systems. Inflated and also buoyant kites have proved excellent in moderate winds but difficult to handle in strong winds. What is needed is the combination of the best of the above systems. The ideal sports-kite must be water-launchable, yet it must have a mechanism to reduce its pull for handling and emergencies. The best kite for an extended system would be shaped like an inflated wing with electrical yaw and pitch control, and would thus take up any

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Figure 7 A Costes Hapa and Stewkie inflated kite on a fine reach (T. Schmidt).

desired line tension and angle possible within the wind window available, and this would be on a single line. A control system would maintain the desired settings automatically. Solar cells would power the system, perhaps also with enough power left over for propulsion in light winds. For this, the kite might be equipped with propellers or be rotary in nature, allowing either high forces in `autogyro' or electrically powered modes, or the harvesting of excess energy in stronger winds (i.e. an airborne wind turbine).

For long trips, the kite would be buoyant and have an integrated small solar-powered electrolyser for replenishing hydrogen. The Hapa Present Hapas are either too small for starting the system or too large for travelling quickly. What is needed is a multiplewing geometry or indeed several Hapas of different sizes

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Figure 8 A radio-controlled Stewart/Schmidt hoop Hapa.

behind each other. A Hapa for the extended system would have an electronic controller communicating with the kite in order to maintain the desired line tension, direction and course. It would be able to stay on the surface or operate at a set depth. A control system would ensure that the Hapa does not jump out of the water when pulled hard, as is sometimes the case with present designs. This technology already exists for hydrofoil boats. A certain amount of electrochemical energy storage would allow operation in periods of adverse conditions and facilitate launching procedures, for example using additional propellers.

The nacelle This would be the pilot's crow's nest, suspended from the line and able to move up and down along it. In low winds, the nacelle would float and act as a boat. It would also have its own adjustable hydrofoil for launching and low-speed operation. Future uses Our third millennium aquaviator might not be Hagedoorn's suggested military pilot but an oceanographic researcher. A typical trip might go like this: You cycle to the hangar where a number of kite-Hapas are stored, pick the one with a nacelle for overnight trips and manoeuvre the contraption to the dock on its dedicated trolley, the kite being completely feathered for this operation. The wind is onshore, so the Hapa must first pull kite and nacelle outside using stored electrical energy like a

The line This should be streamlined at least near the Hapa. For the extended system it should be able to transmit electrical power between the Hapa and the kite. A variation would be a looped endless line or a torque-resistant component able to transmit mechanical power.

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Figure 9 A Hapa-stabilized folding canoe (C. Finlayson).

veritable sea horse. You remain on the water-surface until you have cleared the harbour. Freeing off a bit, the Hapa's main foil begins to work and, speeding up, the line tension increases sufficiently so that a touch of the joystick pulls the nacelle free from the waves. Now the speed increases even more, and rapid progress is made to deep water. You now advance the nacelle towards the kite and make the Hapa dive, collecting data and water samples. With the computer doing all the work, you have time to take aerial videos of the inquisitive dolphins nearby. As the light begins to fade, you reduce the speed for safety and the Hapa is power-parked with sufficient force to keep the nacelle suspended, so that you may enjoy a restful night, gently swaying in the arms of an airborne Morpheus.

suggestions and corrections. Roger Glencross was instrumental in getting this paper written and was the driving force in keeping Hagedoorn's goal of `ultimate sailing' in our minds. Apart from those mentioned in the text and references, many others have also helped with `ultimate sailing' experiments to them also my thanks. Last but also foremost, my thanks go to Professor J.G. Hagedoorn himself, for sharing his ideas with us.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Hagedoorn's eldest son, A. Hagedoorn, was extremely helpful in obtaining some of the material presented and in checking parts of the Introduction. Gerhard Diephuis provided much of the biographical information, procured the pictures of Hagedoorn's Hapas, and was very helpful with

Figure 10 An airship sailing with Hapa (from D. Costes' French patent no. 443 378).

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Ashford P. 1990. Stabilising paravane experiments. Low Drag Craft. AYRS Publication No. 107. Ashford P. 1994. Seadogs for monohulls. Ultimate Sailing: The Hapa Revisited. AYRS Publication No. 114. Beringer W. 1996. Parawings. Verlag fur Technik und Handwerk. Biegler R. 2001. Taking a `seadog' for a walk. AYRS Catalyst 1, 24 25. Bradfield W.S. 1979. High speed sailing vehicles. Speed Sailing. AYRS Publication No. 93. Bruce E. and Morss H. 1965/1970/1976. Opinions about Hydrofoils. AYRS Publications Nos 51, 74 and 82. Burgess C.P. 1939/1995. Sailing airships at sea. Reprinted in Ultimate Sailing III. AYRS Publication No. 118. Costes D. 1994/1996. Windsailing for airships and gliders: using the `Seadog'. Ultimate Sailing IV. AYRS Publication No. 122. Costes D. 1995. A description of some seadog inventions. Ultimate Sailing III. AYRS Publication No. 118. Glencross R. 1993. Sailing craft Hagedoorn. AYRS Projects. AYRS Publication No. 112. Glencross R. 1996. Kites and Hapas at Speedweek 1996. Ultimate Sailing IV. AYRS Publication No. 112. Hagedoorn J.G. 1971/1994. Ultimate Sailing: Introducing the Hapa/Ultimate Sailing: The Hapa Revisited. AYRS Publication No. 114. Hagedoorn J.G. 1975. Ultimate sailing. Scientific American, March (page numbers unavailable). Hanschke T. 1976. Segeln auf Gletschern. Alpinismus 12.

Kitson T. 1994. The experimental craft at Weymouth 19924. Speed Sailing and Speed Weeks 19924. AYRS Publication No. 115. Morwood J. 1961. An inflatable kite. Aerodynamics I. AYRS Publication No. 37. Pocock G. 1827/1851. The Aeropleustic Art. Facsimile reprint, 1 Jan 1969, by Edward L. Stearn, San Francisco, CA. Quinton B. 2001. Winds of change: a rally for innovative watercraft. AYRS Catalyst 1, 5. Roeseler C. 1997. A field study of kite-powered hydrofoil theory. Transport Sailcraft. AYRS Publication No. 124. Roeseler W. and Funston N. 1979. The Sea Nymph and the ancient Egyptian Yacht. The Ancient Interface Sailing Symposium 1979, Pamona, CA. AIAA. Schmidt T. 1984. Unusual sailing systems for kites. The Naval Architect E, 7576. Schmidt T. 1985/1995. Hapa development 19801985. Reprinted in Ultimate Sailing III. AYRS Publication No. 118. Schmidt T. 1991. A short history of Hapas. Foils and Hapas. AYRS Publication No. 108. Schmidt T. 1994/1996. Hagedoorn, Glencross and the Hapa. Ultimate Sailing IV. AYRS Publication No. 122.

NOTE Copies of AYRS publications or photocopies of articles may be obtained by writing to: Amateur Yacht Research Society, BCM AYRS, London WC1N 3XX, UK.

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