Please select your home edition
Edition
Predictwind - Iridium

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









Make Fast MooringsThe Water Shed - 3Collinson and Co

Related Articles

Rolex Sydney Hobart Race – Race record smashed
On Day Three (just) of the 72nd Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race Perpetual Loyal smashed the race record On Day Three (just) of the 72nd Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, in the strongest downwind conditions in recent times, certainly as good as the 1999 iteration of the blue water classic, Anthony Bell’s supermaxi, Perpetual Loyal, the former Speedboat and then Rambler 100, smashed the race record for the famous 628-nautical mile event.
Posted on 27 Dec 2016
Rolex Sydney Hobart Race – right turn means record in mortal danger?
A while ago we talked about not unprecedented conditions, but certainly ones that had not been seen for ages. A while ago we talked about not unprecedented conditions, but certainly ones that had not been seen for ages. Those that did a lot of Hobarts in the 90s would scoff at the thought of using the kite sheets for the whole journey. Their memories would be why they even bothered to clip them onto the rail at all.
Posted on 27 Dec 2016
Rolex Sydney Hobart Race – The Derwent awake or asleep for Loyal?
With steady winds now pushing everyone down the Tasmanian East Coast With steady winds now pushing everyone down the Tasmanian East Coast, it does appear that barring a mechanical failure, Anthony Bell’s Perpetual Loyal will be the first boat into Storm Bay tonight, and well on record pace too!
Posted on 27 Dec 2016
AeroMedia Drone Video from Rolex Sydney Hobart Race start
Jono Whiity drives the 18-Footer, Line 7, and also pilots the hAeroMedia drone for these images of the #RSHYR start. Jono Whiity drives the 18-Footer, Line 7, and also pilots the AeroMedia drone that captured these images of the #RSHYR start.
Posted on 27 Dec 2016
Rolex Sydney Hobart Race – Situation normal
You could easily say that all is right with the world again. You could easily say that all is right with the world again. After the worst start in 12 years, the Oatley family’s 100 foot Wild Oats XI, the eight times line honours winner skippered by Mark Richards is leading the fleet South, as she has done so many, many times before.
Posted on 26 Dec 2016
Rolex Sydney Hobart Race – Changing of the guard
So as darkness descends on the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, watch systems and red lights take over from sunglasses So as darkness descends on the 72nd Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, watch systems and red lights take the place of sunglasses and hats. Yet another of the Hobart maxims is now coming into play. You go out early and come in late. It means you stay offshore early to pick up the East Australia Current running down South and then come in back to the Tasmanian coast and stay there.
Posted on 26 Dec 2016
Wild Oats XI Training Day - VIDEO
As your Christmas Day preparations get into full swing, chances are you won’t have much time to get into the mood As your Christmas Day preparations get into full swing, chances are you won’t have much time to get into the mood for the big race to Hobart on Boxing Day. So here’s a pacey one minute video we've compiled from a training day that we shot aboard Wild Oats XI this time last year in a solid nor'easter, shortly after her major rebuild was completed. Merry Christmas to all from Crosbie and Dale
Posted on 23 Dec 2016
Aon Youth Worlds - Images from Day 2 - 420 and Drone
Sail-World NZ's editor, Richard Gladwell was on the water for Day 2 of the Aon Youth World sailing Championship Sail-World NZ's editor, Richard Gladwell was on the water for Day 2 of the Aon Youth World sailing Championship off Torbay on Auckland's North Shore. Here's the gallery of images from the 420's along with a couple of images of the Drone launch and retrieval
Posted on 17 Dec 2016
America's Cup - More retrospective rule changes split Challengers
The America's Cup Competitors Forum pushed through more retrospective Protocol changes at a meeting The America's Cup Competitors Forum pushed through more retrospective Protocol changes at a meeting believed to have been held in Fukuoka at the time of the America's Cup World Series held in the City. One of the retrospective rule changes gives clear advantage to competitors who have opted to adopt the risky strategy of designing and developing light air and heavy air foiling daggerboards for the
Posted on 13 Dec 2016
From PLC to ZHIK- Crowie's transition from the multinationals
We spoke to Zhik's CEO David Crow, known as Crowie, who works alongside the founder and former-CEO, Brian Conolly. We spoke to Zhik's CEO David Crow, known as Crowie, who came into the company from a corporate background and now works alongside the founder and former-CEO, Brian Conolly.
Posted on 12 Dec 2016