The subject of contra-rotating propellers is now receiving more attention in the light of the increasing cost of marine fuels. There is nearly universal agreement that the use of contra-rotating propellers significantly improves propulsive efficiency. This work is part of a comprehensive program to establish the technical and economic merits of hydrodynamically coupled contra-rotating propellers via epicyclic gear as opposed to the more costly and complex alternate mechanically or thermodynamically coupled arrangements. This paper briefly describes the program and more specifically describes the model test rig that has been designed and constructed for use in the test and evaluation of two contra-rotating propeller designs as compared with the best available single propeller design operating on a selected model hull. The test rig will be used to generate performance data under various simulated operating conditions. Sketches, drawings, and other data depicting the test rig are included.

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