Throwback Video: Boeing’s Pegasus-Class Hydrofoils, the Fastest Ships in the U.S. Navy

Here’s a video showing the early model Boeing-built hydrofoil Tucumcari that served as the basis for the subsequent Pegasus-class patrol boats for the U.S. Navy.

The vessel used waterjet propulsion and a computer-controlled submerged foil configuration consisting of one foil at the bow and two foils on the port and starboard side. The Tucumcari was one of two prototype boats contracted by the Navy for the purpose of evaluating hydrofoil technology with a top speed of 50 knots.

The model led to construction of the Pegasus-class patrol boats, which have been dubbed the fastest vessels in the U.S. Navy. The lead ship, USS Pegasus, was launched in November 1974 and commissioned in 1977. The Navy went on to build a total of six Pegasus boats, which were in service until they were decommissioned in 1993.

USS Pegasus (PHM-1). U.S. Navy Photo
USS Pegasus (PHM-1). U.S. Navy Photo