Pittman Innovation Awards

2007 FKP Awards

by Sail Staff, Posted March 6, 2007
Edited by David SchmidtBy definition, sailors are gearheads. Whether it’s a new sail, new electronics, or even a new mainsheet, they’re eager to put their new gear through the paces. Few people recognized this love of gear and need for innovation more than the late Freeman K. Pittman, SAIL’s technical editor from 1982 to 1996. Freeman was widely regarded by members of the marine

H2Out Systems Dryers

by Adam Cort, Posted January 10, 2012
The SD units range from small canisters suitable for a toolbox up to sizes capable of drying out large interior spaces. SAIL contributing editor Nigel Calder uses an SD to keep his boat’s freezer from icing up. The AVDs feature a transparent cylinder with end caps for connecting to a fuel tank’s vent plumbing.

2009 Pittman Innovation Awards

by Sail Staff, Posted February 3, 2009
As sailors we pit ourselves against the unknown, working to negotiate safe passages through ever-changing oceans and lakes and rivers in weather conditions for which the term “variable” should be considered a euphemism. While each passage or race is unique, one aspect of sailing is universal—namely, that innovation and new technology combine to make our sport easier, safer, and just plain more

Maretron Fluid Flow Monitor

by Adam Cort, Posted January 10, 2012
The FFM100 fuel flow monitor is the latest addition to the long company’s long list of sensors, modules, cabling, components, displays and software.  The unit converts signals from fuel, water and other fluid sensors into NMEA 2000 data, and when used in conjunction with Maretron’s own positive displacement fuel sensors provides unprecedented accuracy when measuring consumption.
Sailors today live in an era replete with new equipment and innovation. Looking back on the state-of-the-art in February of 1970—when SAIL’s first issue was unveiled—you’d find aluminum was still considered a pretty high-tech material. Wooden spars were still relatively common. Electronics were primitive: LORAN was top dog, and plenty of cruisers used radio direction finders when navigating out

Vetus Rimdrive Bow Thruster

by Adam Cort, Posted January 10, 2012
The propeller and the outer ring connecting the tips of the blades also serve as the motor’s rotor, and the stationary windings are in a tunnel module that slides into a boat’s structural tunnel tube. As a result, there is no bulky motor to install inside the boat, only a compact interface module.
Each winter SAIL honors the memory of the late Freeman K. Pittman, who served as the magazine’s technical editor for 14 years, by recognizing the most innovative new products of the last 12 months in his name. For 2011, SAIL executive editor Charles J. Doane (Cruising Gear), editor-at-large David Schmidt (Racing Gear), senior editor Adam Cort (Safety Gear), electronics editor Ralph Naranjo

2013 Pittman Innovation Awards

by Sail Staff, Posted January 24, 2013
The Pittman Innovation Awards are named after Freeman K. Pittman, SAIL’s widely respected technical editor of 14 years, who succumbed to Lou Gehrig’s disease in 1996. Although it’s not easy living up to Freeman’s high standards, we think he’d be impressed by this year’s selection.
Boats are complex objects containing numerous systems, parts, components, and gadgets, all of which are designed to make the sailing experience more enjoyable. Many of us sailors enjoy trying out the latest gear, be it a sail, a chartplotter, or a snatch block. And if you’ve sailed long enough, you’ve seen gear steadily improve as innovating manufacturers come up with ever-better mousetraps. If

2014 Pittman Innovation Awards

by Adam Cort, Posted February 26, 2014
Sailing has always been a technology-driven activity, and the spirit of innovation that prompted the first Stone Age sailor to cast off and let the wind do the work remains as vibrant today as ever. 
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