students at Chalmers studying Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering have,
over the past year, designed and built a sailing dinghy as part of Formula
Sailing, the project where 70 percent of the boat must be made of natural
materials. The students chose to build the boat with a balsa wood core with
flax and a cashew nut-based epoxy. The unique sailing dinghy will participate
in a three-day race in Palermo, Sicily.
Starting Thursday, September 20, they will compete against teams from seven Italian universities and one German university in the regatta 1001VELAcup.
that the boat is ready for departure to Italy, a naming ceremony was held at Teknologgården.
Angela Hillemyr, Head of Department and responsible for utilisation at the
department of Mechanics and Maritime Sciences, had the honour of naming the
boat. Of course, as part of boating tradition, the naming ceremony was completed
A challenging and educational project
Eriksson is one of the master's students who participated in the project. He
tells us that the work has been tough at times but that, first and foremost, it
has been fun and educational.
has been a very complicated and time-consuming project, but it has also been
very interesting to get to see a project that we have been working on for so
long become reality.”
Persson, PhD student, has been the group's supervisor throughout the project,
from creating the design to completing the boat.
purpose of a project like this is to learn about the challenges you face when
you go from designing something to actually building it. Finding materials, the
right suppliers and managing to plan the project correctly.”
dinghy is an extreme building project in several ways. To optimize the boat for
the wind conditions at Palermo during the race, the boat has been built with a
very tall sail-plan and very large sails. The group has also struggled to make
the boat very light to make it as fast as possible.
Preparing for the competition in Italy
group is preparing for the three-day race in Italy. Adam tells us that he is
pleased with the project, both the process and the result, and that he has high
hopes for the competition.
the boat works as we hope, I definitely think we have a big chance of winning
the whole competition.”
to the rules of the competition, the person who sails the boat must study at
the same university as those who built it. Two crew members studying at
Chalmers will therefore be on board during the sailing. They are both elite
level sailors in the Olympic 49er class. The competition in Sicily takes place
from 20 to 23 September.
Read more: "Organic boat building in a nutshell"
Text: Sophia Kristensson
Film: Johan Bodell