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Saturday, February 13, 2010

America's Cup - Harnessing the Wind with High Tech

The world of competitive sailing is embracing the need to use energy more efficiently. One look at the revolutionary yacht designs in this year's America's Cup match racing event will convince you of that:



And it's not just the giant yachts. Have a look at Bladerider Moth competition:


These sailing dinghies use horizontal, ultra-light, carbon fibre foils to lift the boat out of the water in as little as 5 knots of breeze, allowing the boat to travel at nearly twice the apparent wind speed. They can reach speeds of close to 30 knots (60 kmh) downwind.

It's more than just the need for speed driving innovation in the sailing world. Check out the Eco 60 class of the Velux 5 Oceans around-the-world solo race:
The Eco 60 class will also be governed by regulations designed to promote ideas to improve the ecological and environmental impact of such events on the planet. These very specific rules, to be published in the coming months, will seek to limit fossil fuel consumption and encourage wind and solar power, taking a message of sustainable living around the world.
Watch the America's Cup live feed.

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