Motion Control of Multi-hulled vessels

I am presently in my final year at Southampton University in the UK and am doing a group project on motion control in multi hulled vessels.
Myself and my colleagues have been forwarded information from within the university, however there are several aspects with which, being but a mechhie, I'm not familiar with.
There's ship/wave interations, energy transfer between waves and the ship, and building regulations on ship design, and the only papers online that I've found are still way above my level of understanding. There doesn't seem to be a "Ship interactions for dummies" site. Funny...
Slightly more specifically, being the only member of the group with any control systems experience, I've been delegated to design and build the sensing and control systems for the finished product. At the moment, I'm looking along the lines of accelerometers for the sensing side, which will feed information into a controller (possibly PD, but I'm open to suggestions) that will actuate a response from the system. It will have to (probably) be a closed loop system with some form of negative feedback, but given the ever changing input signal, I'm not sure how this might respond.
At the moment, fast ferries use T-foils to stabilise their motion, but these cause drag at slow speeds. If anyone has any data regarding their use I'd also be appreciative. We've only been able to come up with data for 18kts and 40kts - hardly enough to establish a working relationship....
Many thanks in advance,
Stuart Paterson Part IV Mechanical Engineering University of Southampton
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Stuart Paterson wrote:

As you are just round the corner from them, go and see Steve Pelc at MPE Ltd. They do a range of small microcontroller boards that could easily be integrated into a control system to suit your needs. Steve will also be able to point you in the direction of suitable books and other support materials to achieve your goals.
MPE's website is at http://www.mpeltd.demon.co.uk /.
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Paul E. Bennett ....................<email://peb@a...>
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