The HydroComp tools are designed to be used to design a propeller. HydroComp tools, combined with the three step process outlined below can be used to design marine propellers for a wide variety of different marine craft.


Identify the proper hydrodynamic size and shape
Tools like HydroComp PropExpert® or NavCad® are used to define the global parameters of the propellers. Considerations about clearance, local flow properties, strength, noise and vibration affect the detailed parameters.

Global propeller parameters are determined for a given ship design and include:

  • Propeller blade section shape
  • Number of blades
  • Propeller Diameter
  • Pitch (nominal)
  • Blade area ratio

Create blade surface and propeller design data
HydroComp PropCad® is an interactive environment to rapidly build design documents and geometric properties once the global propeller parameters are known. PropCad’s integrated design wizards allow the user to fulfill the required propeller parameters and quickly generate the 3D blade geometry, the 2D propeller drawing and the offsets. PropCad features traditional propeller section shapes and distributions, however the user is given fine control over the offsets and non-dimensional distributions.

HydroComp PropElements® software is capable is of more advanced propeller analysis if needed. This advanced analysis includes the use of vortex lifting line theory to be better predict the hydrodynamic performance of the propeller blade and allow for a wake adapted propeller to be designed.

Create a 3D model of the propeller
The ultimate objective is to have a propeller built – either by milling, molding or rapid prototyping. PropCad is capable of exporting a file to most common CAD and CAM programs. These more general purpose CAD and CAM packages are required to put finishing detail touches on the propeller design and then allow the design to be sent to the propeller manufacturer, CNC milling machine or rapid prototyping machine. The 3D propeller model can also be exported for external analysis in FEA (Finite Element Analysis) and CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) engineering tools.

Recommended software for Propeller Design
PropCad: for propeller 2D drawings and 3D CAD
PropElements : for performance-optimize propeller design