Marine Industry Experts Convene at Volvo Ocean Village

Volvo Ocean RaceMarine industry experts from around the world will convene next week in the Volvo Ocean Race Village at Auckland’s Viaduct Basin for the 5th High Performance Yacht Design conference.

This three-day technical conference, 9th to 11th March, is the latest for those who make it their business to push the performance boundaries of yachts both power and sail.  It is organized by the Royal Institute of Naval Architects (RINA) NZ and the University of Auckland

The inaugural conference in December 2002 was held in the run-up to the 2003 America’s Cup competition and was widely acclaimed as one of the world’s leading conferences covering yacht research and technology.

The high profile meeting enables naval architects, engineers, builders, designers and researchers to present and hear papers on the current state of high performance yacht technology.

Auckland-based Burns Fallow, Head Sail Designer and a Director at world-leading North Sails will deliver the keynote address on Monday morning in the Rangitoto Room of the Viaduct Events Center, talking about developments in sail design, performance improvements and what the future holds. Fallow has completed five America’s Cup campaigns with Emirates Team New Zealand and has headed the sail program there since 2000.

Papers delivered on the opening day will pick up on the theme of sails as a driving force, with two sessions on wing sails and their development followed by presentations on aerodynamics.

On Monday evening, there is a special open session where a wider audience will hear from Volvo Ocean Race CEO and former skipper Knut Frostad about the philosophy and design of the VO65 racer and the Volvo Ocean Race. He’ll be joined by Race Director Jack Lloyd.  Long-time Kiwi sailing commenter Peter Montgomery will be master of ceremonies.

Newly released data and analysis are always a draw card at technical conferences and Tuesday’s session will feature the first results of load monitoring on the fleet of VOR 65s. Paolo Manganelli, from Gurit in the United Kingdom will present these fresh off-the-press results.

“In its four previous iterations here in Auckland, the conference has earned a reputation as a valued forum for sharing industry developments and for networking,” said Graeme Finch, of RINA (NZ) who is conference chairman. “We’re on course to enhance that record.”

The themes for Tuesday presentations will cover other papers on performance, plus structures and design. On Wednesday it will be foils, hydrodynamics and aerodynamics.

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