A rigid-inflatable boat (RIB) or rigid-hulled inflatable boat, (RHIB) is a light-weight but high performance and high capacity boat constructed with a solid, shaped hull and flexible tubes at the gunwale. A boat is a Watercraft of modest size designed to float or plane on water and provide transport over it A hull is the body of a Ship or Boat. It is a central concept in floating vessels as it provides the Buoyancy that keeps the vessel from sinking The gunwale (ˈɡʌnəl "gunnel" to rhyme with "tunnel" is a nautical term describing the top edge of the side of a Boat. The design is stable and seaworthy. The inflatable collar means that buoyancy is not lost if a large quantity of water is shipped aboard. In Physics, buoyancy ( BrE IPA: /ˈbɔɪənsi/ is the upward Force on an object produced by the surrounding liquid or gas in which it is The RIB is a development of the inflatable boat. An inflatable boat is a lightweight boat constructed with its sides and bow made of flexible tubes containing pressurised gas
RIBs are commonly 4 to 9 metres (13 to 28 ft) long, although they can range in length between 2. 5 and 18 metres (7. 5 and 55 ft). A RIB is often propelled by one or more outboard motors or an inboard motor turning a water jet or z-drive. An outboard motor is a propulsion system for smaller Boats General uses Outboard motors for a Boat are developed as a self-contained The internal combustion engine is an engine in which the Combustion of Fuel and an Oxidizer (typically air occurs in a confined space called a A pump-jet or water jet is a marine system that creates a jet of Water for propulsion. A Z-drive is a type of Azimuth thruster in which the pod-mounted propellers are driven mechanically rather than electrically Generally the power of the motors is in the range of 5 to 500 horse power (4 to 373 kW).
RIBs are used as rescue craft, safety boats for sailing, dive boats or tenders for larger boats and ships. A rescue craft is a Boat or Ship used in rescuing. Some of these are found on beaches used by Lifeguards they also operate at events such A dive boat is a Boat that Scuba divers use to reach a diving site which they could not reach by swimming from land A ship's tender, usually referred to as a tender, is a Boat, or a larger ship used to service a Ship, generally by transporting people and/or supplies Their shallow draught, high maneuverability, speed and relative immunity to damage in low speed collisions are advantages in these applications.
RIBs up to about 7 metres in length can be towed on trailers on the road, making them attractive as leisure craft. A Trailer is generally an unpowered vehicle pulled by a powered vehicle
RIBs are generally designed with hydroplaning hulls. Greenland (Kalaallit Nunaat meaning "Land of the Greenlanders" Grønland is a self-governing Danish Province located between the planing Boat 's hull skims across the surface of the Water rather than pushing through the water in the way a traditional Displacement hull Due to their low weight RIBs often out-perform other similarly sized and powered boats, and can also cope with rougher seas.
The maximum speed of the RIB depends on its weight, power, load, and sea conditions. A typical 6 metre RIB, with six passengers, 110 horsepower engines, in the sea in Beaufort force 2 is very likely to have a top speed of around 30 knots. The Beaufort scale (ˈboʊfət is an Empirical measure for describing Wind speed based mainly on observed sea conditions High performance RIBs may operate with a speed between 40 and 70 knots, depending on the size and weight. Certain companies operating out of holiday destinations use RIBs as a "wave jumper". This is a standard RIB of about 10 metres in length, with two parallel rows of seating down the centre of the craft. It is propelled by two engines, with the aim being to get the craft to roughly 30-40 knots before jumping off the tops of waves.
The hull is made of steel, wood, aluminium, or more commonly, a combination of wood for the structure and glass-reinforced plastic (GRP) composite for the shaped and smooth surface. Steel is an Alloy consisting mostly of Iron, with a Carbon content between 0 Wood is hard fibrous lignified structural tissue produced as secondary Xylem in the stems of Woody plants notably trees but also shrubs WikipediaNaming Glass-reinforced plastic ( GRP) is a Composite material or Fiber-reinforced plastic made of a Plastic reinforced by fine fibers The hull of a RIB is shaped to increase the performance of the boat in the water by optimising its hydroplaning characteristics. planing Boat 's hull skims across the surface of the Water rather than pushing through the water in the way a traditional Displacement hull "Deep-V" hulls cut through waves easily but require greater engine power to start planing than "shallow-V" hulls, which plane at lower speed but with a more uncomfortable ride.
The tubes are usually constructed in separate sections to reduce the effect of a puncture, each with a valve to add or remove air. For other uses see Valve (disambiguation. For the electronic component see Thermionic valve. Common materials for the tubes are Polyvinyl chloride, Polyurethane and Hypalon.
As a material for building tubes, polyvinylchloride (PVC) has the disadvantage of lacking flexibility. To make it supple, an additive is used with the polymer. A polymer is a large Molecule ( Macromolecule) composed of repeating Structural units typically connected by Covalent Chemical bonds This additive vaporises as the material ages, making the PVC brittle and allowing it to crack easily. Evaporation is the process by which Molecules in a Liquid state (e A PVC tube is the cheapest option and lasts approximately five years.
Tubes made of polyurethane (PU) are difficult to manufacture and hard to repair. A polyurethane, commonly abbreviated PU, is any Polymer consisting of a chain of organic units joined by urethane links PU has the great advantage of being very tough, it can be made knife-proof or bulletproof. Unfortunately to make PU airtight, it has to be used in layers, combined with neoprene. Neoprene or polychloroprene is a family of synthetic Rubbers that are produced by Polymerization of Chloroprene. The biggest disadvantage with PU is that it ages quickly: thermal and mechanical wear-and-tear and exposure to ultraviolet-light are problems. Ultraviolet ( UV) light is Electromagnetic radiation with a Wavelength shorter than that of Visible light, but longer than X-rays A high quality PU-made tube lasts 10 to 15 years.
PU tubes are often to be found on commercial RIBs, in applications where strength and durability are needed. Replacing the tubes when they wear out, usually costs one third of the complete RIB.
Tubes made of Hypalon are easy to manufacture and can be repaired with simple puncture repair kits. Hypalon is a Trademark for chlorosulfonated Polyethylene (CSPE Synthetic rubber (CSM noted for its resistance to chemicals temperature extremes and
Hypalon is not airtight and so must be combined with Neoprene when used to build tubes. Neoprene or polychloroprene is a family of synthetic Rubbers that are produced by Polymerization of Chloroprene. Tubes made with Hypalon and Neoprene layers can last 30 years or more.
Although early in its life a PU tube will be stronger than a Hypalon / Neoprene tube, by the age of 5 years they have similar levels of durability, which is why Hypalon/Neoprene tubes are often to be found on RIBs that are owned by commercial and high value leisure users.
A 3 part instructional video of RIB Tube construction may be viewed at 
Larger RIBs can have hard-tops or wheelhouses made of GRP or aluminium. WikipediaNaming Wheelhouses offer protection from the elements to both the crew and passengers - and can also protect equipment such as suspension seats and navigation equipment. Some RIB manufacturers, particularly those popular in Ireland and the West Coast of Scotland provide optional canopies which form fabric and perspex wheelhouses but can be easily removed in good weather. Increasingly, RIBs are becoming available with small cabins (usually with accommodation for 2 people and in some cases sea toilets or chemical toilets), widening the application of RIBs as cruising craft.
The combination of rigid hull and large inflatable buoyancy tubes seems to have been first introduced in 1967 by Tony and Edward Lee-Elliott , and patented by Admiral Hoare in 1969 after research and development at Atlantic College in Wales. Year 1967 ( MCMLXVII) was a Common year starting on Sunday (link will display full calendar of the 1967 Gregorian calendar. Year 1969 ( MCMLXIX) was a Common year starting on Wednesday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. The United World College of the Atlantic, more commonly referred to simply as Atlantic College, is an internationally prestigious private boarding school in south Wales RIBs then were introduced for the first time  as lifeboats on the Solent, England in 1970 by the League of Venturers Search and Rescue and also the Gosport and Fareham Inshore Rescue Service. A lifeboat is a boat designed to save the lives of people in trouble at sea The Solent is a stretch of Sea separating the Isle of Wight from the mainland of England. England is a Country which is part of the United Kingdom. Its inhabitants account for more than 83% of the total UK population whilst its mainland Year 1970 ( MCMLXX) was a Common year starting on Thursday (link shows full calendar of the Gregorian calendar.
Today there are about a thousand manufacturers of RIBs and inflatables. Other common brands include Walker Bay, Avon, AB & Apex. Avon Inflatables Ltd is a manufacturer of Inflatable boats RIBs and Marine safety equipment. About fifty RIB manufacturers are in the UK.
Based on the concept of a RIB but with a tube/sponson manufactured from a solid material such as moulded polyethylene or aluminium and therefore being much more robust than the fabrics commonly used. The founder Sir William Hillary Sir William Hillary came to live on the Isle of Man in 1808 The Thames ( is a major River flowing through southern England. Polyethylene or polythene ( IUPAC name poly(ethene) is a Thermoplastic commodity heavily used in consumer products (notably the WikipediaNaming Boats with foam filled collars such as the secure all-around flotation equipped (SAFE) boats employed by the US Coast Guard can also be classified as Rigid Buoyant Boats rather than "true" RIBs as the collar is solid foam rather than inflated. The handling tends to be very similar to a RIB; likewise they will remain afloat (buoyant) even if completely flooded. Aluminium RBBs tend to be bespoke (custom-made to specification) or low-volume products whilst the tooling cost of rotomolded polyethylene boats tends to require these to be higher volume products. Bespoke is usually a British English term for Tailored clothing (including coats suits and shirts made at a customer's request and exactly to the Rotational molding or moulding is a versatile process for creating many kinds of mostly hollow Plastic parts At least three manufacturers are producing rotomolded boats of this type.  One supplier demonstrates the robustness of the boats by dropping one from a crane onto a concrete car park. A boat is a Watercraft of modest size designed to float or plane on water and provide transport over it Concrete is a construction material composed of Cement (commonly Portland cement) as well as other cementitious materials such as Fly ash and Slag  The U. S. Navy’s small unit riverine craft and the Coast Guard’s Defender class 25-foot boats are examples of RBBs. The small unit riverine craft (SURC is rigid-hull armed and armored patrol boat used by the US Marines and US Navy to maintain control of rivers and inland waterways The USCG Defender class boat, also called response boat-small (RB-S is a standard boat introduced by the United States Coast Guard in July 2003