Please select your home edition
Edition
Southern Spars - North Technology

America's Cup- The Wing is the Thing for Emirates Team NZ's next AC72

by Richard Gladwell on 18 Jan 2013
Grant Dalton (left) and Nick Holroyd in front of the new AC72 - Emirates Team NZ - Media Day January 17, 2012 Richard Gladwell www.photosport.co.nz

Emirates Team New Zealand are on target to launch their second AC72 catamaran, around February 4, with their Challenger for the 34th America’s Cup having her first sail on February 7.

Doors at the teams base were thrown open for the New Zealand media today, showing the 72ft catamaran, with hulls in place, beams fitted and in an advanced state of preparation.

The hulls had only arrived from the Cookson Boats yard on Monday and four days later the beams had been fitted along with the other elements of the Y-structure which takes the loads and stresses from the yacht which is capable of sailing at over 40knots.

The differences from the team’s first AC72 were hard to spot – consistent with the theme that this design would be an evolution of the first rather than a completely new concept. In fact the design was locked off a few days after the launch of the team’s first AC72, in mid-July 2012. That first boat has since been decommissioned after sailing for the maximum 30 days allowed before the January 31, 2013 limitation prescribed by the Protocol for the 34th America’s Cup - ostensibly as a cost saving measure.

Although team principals would not be drawn on the precise nature of the changes, they did concede they were a number of small changes, which would make the second boat more efficient, resulting in faster speeds, stronger apparent wind and an all round better performer.

Eyes only zone

It is in the shed next door where the 40 metre tall wingsails are being built, that the real changes are being implemented. Cameras were barred, and media carefully chaperoned around the wing sails, in contrast to the relative free range permitted in the hull and platform assemble and fit-out area.

Boat 2 will be launched with the wingsail from Boat 1. That wingsail is being worked over completely by a team of 20 builders, in both a maintenance and upgrade exercise.

'We go back into the water with Wing 1, then we turn to Wing 2, which is half built', explains Emirates Team NZ MD, Grant Dalton. 'Then we go to Wing 2.'

'In the end they will be mirrors of each other, so we can switch them in and out if we have to.'

In response to a question as to whether the profile shape of the second wing will be different from the first, Dalton replies 'they will be the same profile, but the profile is changing.'

The team will use only two wings in contrast to both the Defender, Oracle Team USA and the Challenger of Record, Artemis Racing (SWE) who have both smashed their first wingsails, and will be building the full allowed quota of three wingsails.

'They will be so interchangeable the guys won’t even know which one is in the boat,’ chips in Technical Director, Nick Holroyd.

In fact the objective with the wingsails is that if one is totally destroyed before the start of one race, the second will hopefully be able to be fitted in time for the boat to race in the second race of the day. 'They are just sitting there, ready to go,' says Dalton.

Turning to the other AC72’s, Dalton says they don’t know what Artemis Racing’s second wingsail will be like. 'Oracle’s wing is different. Its sectional shape is a little different, but it is more in its ratio that it is quite different, in terms of its flap to front element ratio. It looks really clean. It looks like a really nice wing.

'We don’t know what their third wing is like, but based on the timeframe they had available we can’t imagine that it will be much different from their second. You just don’t have the time available to do any re-design.'

Big hours for design and build

Holroyd explains that there is about 20,000 hours involved in building a wingsail – 'to put that in perspective, it’s the build time of an IACC boat (used in the past five America’s Cups). That’s just hours to build, for design we have three aero-dynamists working on it, and another five on the mechanical drawings and structure and composite design work. It is not far of a third of our design team working on the wingsails for almost two years now.

'There are 15-18 man years of design work in this wingsail'

'There’s a huge number of components, plus the weight budget is very tight, and even more so with the wingsail, because the weight is up high', he adds.

'The wingsails are designed for the San Francisco weather bell-curve, which centres on 15-16kts. Your ability to twist the wing and de-power it is very, very important. If you were running these boats in Valencia, Spain you might look at a three element, two slot type of wingsail. This wingsail package is very much tailored to the winds that we are expecting in San Francisco.'

In response to questions about the top wind strength in which the AC72 is designed to be able to race, Holroyd says that 'is the subject of wild debate amongst the Challengers.

'All the Challengers have been pushing right the way through to lower the 33kt limit that has been in the Protocol. I suspect we might see a little more flexibility from the Defender on that point in the coming months', he adds with a wry smile.

For TVNZ's Martin Tasker's report http://tvnz.co.nz/sailing-news/team-nz-s-second-ac72-running-ahead-schedule-5320522/video?vid=5320487!click_here

And for 3News Ashlee Tulloch's report http://www.3news.co.nz/Team-NZ-unveil-second-boat/tabid/415/articleID/283471/Default.aspx!click_here









Zhik AkzoNobelb 660x82PredictWind.comBarz Optics - San Juan Worlds Best Eyewear

Related Articles

She’s still here with us, and now we can be there for her
Of the many endearing qualities in Lisa Blair, the one that is paramount is her effervescence. Of the many endearing qualities in Lisa Blair, the one that is paramount is her effervescence. Yet it is what lies behind that which could be her most incredible characteristic. Sometimes you can almost overlook her steely determination, but not for long when you start talking with her. Catching up with her live from Cape Town surely was a vivid reminder of not only what this sailor can accomplish
Posted on 24 Apr
Gladwell's Line - Timeout in Bermuda and a decision OTUSA will regret?
With Emirates Team New Zealand's AC50 now in Bermuda and being re-assembled, it is time to take a breath With Emirates Team New Zealand's AC50 now in Bermuda and being re-assembled, it is time to take a breath from what has been a hectic couple of months, both in Auckland and Bermuda. The third major Practice Session has concluded in Bermuda. This was conducted almost entirely if winds of around 16-25kts - starting to get close to the top end of the range for the AC50's.
Posted on 20 Apr
America's Cup - Glenn Ashby on hitting the AC50's sound barrier
These boats are incredible. The performance that can be achieved in light airs is the amazing thing. The big difference between the AC72, the America's Cup Class, used in the 2013 America's Cup in San Francisco and the smaller AC50 to be sailed in Bermuda, lies in their light and medium air performance. 'These boats are incredible. The performance that can be achieved in light airs is the amazing thing. In 7-8-9-10 knots of breeze, you are sailing at 30kts at times.
Posted on 18 Apr
America's Cup - Bernasconi on expected winning factors in Bermuda
ETNZ's Technical Director, Dan Bernasconi has let out a few clues as to where he thought the differences might lie Emirates Team NZ's Technical Director, Dan Bernasconi has let out a few clues as to where he thought the differences might lie once the six teams entered in the 35th America's Cup. 'We have had a great run', he says. 'We've had a few hiccups along the way, as always. But the boat is going really well. We are getting through manoeuvres very well. And we think our straight line speed is good.'
Posted on 18 Apr
America's Cup - Team NZ return fire at Coutts' social media bullets
Emirates Team New Zealand have corrected the allegations made by America's Cup organisers Emirates Team NZ have corrected the allegations made by America's Cup organisers in a media release on Thursday (NZT) over the team's daggerboard use. In the release, replayed by America's Cup Events Authority and Oracle Team USA CEO Sir Russell Coutts on his Facebook page. It was claimed that the Kiwi team had an issue with daggerboards and were using a rule they had not supported to keep sailing
Posted on 2 Apr
New Pacific 52 class makes its debut in San Francisco
The first of two new-build Pacific 52's from Auckland's Cookson Boats is now sailing in San Francisco. The first of two new-build Pacific 52's from Auckland's Cookson Boats is now sailing in San Francisco. Invisible Hand for San Francisco's Frank Slootman replaces his earlier RP63 of the same name. She will soon be joined by a second Cookson build, Bad Pack (Tom Holthus) from the same moulds. A third, RIO 52 is for RIO 100 supermaxi owner Manouch Moshayedi.
Posted on 18 Mar
Securely moored to the quay, or cast adrift?
With boating, you have to cast the lines off in order to go and get into it. With boating, you have to cast the lines off in order to go and get into it. However, when it comes to your insurer, you kind of expect that they’re going to be as bound to you as the standing rigging is to the mast, the ring frames to the hull, or the engine mounts to the runners, and the propellers to the shafts, skegs and cutlass bearings. Whom would you rather be insured with?
Posted on 15 Mar
Gladwell's Line - Of Carnage, Characters and Colour
About this time of an America's Cup season, the sap begins rising as new boats are launched About this time of an America's Cup season, the sap begins rising as new boats are launched, and Cup fans get their first sight of the various team designers' response to the latest America's Cup Class rule. In the monohull days, of course, we initially only got a partial glimpse thanks to the shrouding practices adopted by all teams to hide the nether regions of their America's Cupper
Posted on 13 Mar
So what’s it really like?
For ages now, these editorials have talked about multihull this, record that, outrageous boat speed and 24-hour runs For ages now, well it seems like that anyway, these editorials have talked about multihull this, record that, outrageous boat speed and incredible 24-hour runs. In their own very unique way they totally represent the technical avant-garde, and thank God for that. Where would we be without their impressive shapes, wonderful rigs, and now of course, foiling magic.
Posted on 6 Mar
JJ Giltinan 18ft - Kiwi Champion the subject of two protests in Sydney
Overall series leader Yamaha will have her position put on the line in a series of protest hearings on Friday Overall series leader Yamaha will have her position put on the line in a series of protest hearings Friday morning in Sydney. She faces two claims - both from Appliancesonline (David Witt). The first is an attempt to re-open the Hearing held on Wednesday morning after Yamaha was suffered damage in Race 3 as a result of a collision with a give way yacht, and Yamaha received redress of average
Posted on 3 Mar