To design and build the world’s fastest racing yacht requires significant time and effort, the highest level of design expertise and best-in-class design tools. Certainly it also requires skilled sailors, but the key to winning this long-standing race has incresingly become design excellence.
The focus of the 35th edition of the America’s Cup is sustainability. The set of restrictive rules means this is likely to be the most challenging America’s Cup ever from an engineering simulation point of view.
The introduction of much tighter design specifications, including “one design” components, such as a common wing for all contenders, reduces the scope for large design differences between the boats and will likely mean that victory is decided by the smallest of margins.
Since the rules will likely prohibit actual sailing of the boats until about five months before the competition, most of the important early design decisions will have to be based on data from computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations.
Ben Ainslie Racing Teams with CD-adapco
CD-adapco, a global provider of CFD-focused CAE software, announced recently that it is partnering with Ben Ainslie Racing. The America’s Cup team will be utilizing the CD-adapco simulation tool, STAR-CCM+ in the design of its racing boat. Ben Ainslie Racing team just announced its participation in the 35th America’s Cup taking place in 2017.
STAR-CCM+, CFD software used to tackle problems involving multi-physics and complex geometries, produces high-quality results in a single code with minimum user effort. The software was designed to fit easily within existing engineering process to help users automate their simulation workflows and perform iterative design studies with minimal user interaction.
Ainslie became the world’s most successful Olympic sailor after winning a fourth gold medal in London 2012, and quickly turned his attention to his long-term ambition – winning the America’s Cup, the 163-year old trophy never won by Great Britain. In 2013, Ainslie became the first Briton to be part of a winning America’s Cup team in 110 years with ORACLE TEAM USA.
Dr.-Ing. Rodrigo Azcueta, a design engineer for Ben Ainslie Racing commented, “The America’s Cup is ultimately a design race, and facing a fresh, three-year campaign, the Ben Ainslie Racing team were determined that they would need the best possible CFD package. So we committed to an extensive evaluation period and benchmarked several CFD providers. At the end of the day we had a clear winner: the power and flexibility of STAR-CCM+; the new optimization package `Optimate´ added to the outstanding technical support at CD-adapco. Now we look forward to working closely with them and taking our simulation skills to the next level.”
“Hydroplaning America’s Cup boats are as much airplanes as they are boats, so the winning team will have to utilize simulation technology that takes account of the combined effect of aerodynamics and hydrodynamics in order to optimize their designs,” said CD-adapco Executive Vice President Bill Clark. “We call this approach Multi-Disciplinary Design Exploration, and we are delighted that BAR have chosen STAR-CCM+ as a key tool in their quest to win the America’s Cup.”
Learn more about CD-adapco’s line of CFD-focused simulation products, including STAR-CCM+ here.