Piloting an electric hydrofoil catamaran

11/11/21
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On the occasion of the METS (boat show) in Amsterdam, three leading ocean racing companies invite you to test an electric foil boat simulator.

This interactive terminal is the result of close collaboration between the design offices of MerConcept, a company founded by François Gabart; the architectural firm VPLP Design; and the R&D team of the electronics company Madintec.

Simulators are a common tool in nautical design. The architecture firm VPLP Design, known for its successful yachts, uses these digital tools to design and validate its designs. Since 2017, VPLP has developed SYD (Simulation Yacht Dynamics), a new kind of simulator. SYD integrates the effects of swell into the calculation of forces to model its seakeeping. This is an essential feature for hydrofoil boats.

For its part, Madintec, which designs electronics, also uses simulators to digitally validate its steering algorithms. With the advent of foils, it has become essential to have high-level simulators. The ability and intelligence to control the flaps and all of the boat's appendages for flight stabilisation is now a parameter in the design of the architectural elements. Madintec's control algorithms have therefore been connected to the VPLP simulator so that they can validate the performance of their foil designs, incorporating realistic control systems. Similarly, Madintec's design office was also able to refine its control laws as well as the integration with hardware, electronics and software ("hardware in the loop" validation).  


MerConcept, which initiated the project, is leading its implementation and has also made full use of the VPLP simulator connected to Madintec's algorithms. The three companies have a long history of collaboration. As early as 2015, Madintec together with MerConcept designed a new generation autopilot: the MADBrain Autopilot. A development crowned with success in numerous races, including the first two places in the last Vendée Globe. Today, MADBrain is present on a third of the boats in the Transat Jacques Vabre.

Today, MerConcept and Madintec are pleased to present the fruit of their collaboration: the electronic steering wheel with force feedback. This innovation, which allows to retranscribe a maximum of sensations in flight, is present for its first use on SVR-LAZARTIGUE, the Ultim trimaran skippered by François Gabart. The advantage of this technology is to limit the weight of the steering mechanism and to provide an assisted steering tool. With this electronic control, Madintec adds an important element to its solution for securing sailboats and motorboats, including anti-cavity and obstacle avoidance. 

VPLP Design, MerConcept, and Madintec invite you to discover this technology exclusively at METS in Amsterdam, Stand Madintec 05.353.


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