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04/10/2003 -

Faster, Faster, Faster to the Sea with new project of Yves Parlier.

Once Yves Parlier was back from Vendee Globe and became a hero in France he was ready to implement his old ideas. But the idea of seaplane hulls appeared long before that.


In the middle of the 80s, Jean-François Morice, an aeronautical engineer of Arcachon, decided to adapt the principle of stepped hulls, coming from seaplane hulls, on sailing boats. He took out a patent and built with Thierry Eluère a 25-feet catamaran with gliding hulls.

In 1998, Yves Parlier and his team decided to move towards multihulls. They searched for different means of going faster than the existing trimarans by get-tingrid of the Archimedes ' principle.

In 1999, a test base was established in Cazaux. The team gathered two foiler tri-marans and the 25-feet catamaran with the gliding hulls in order to define the different criteria of their performances and reliability. The project of Yves Parlier is in keeping with this line of research of new solutions to keep on going faster on the sea.

In 2000, Yves Parlier and his team created Aquitaine Design Team, a naval architectural unit.
In the same year, an 18-feet prototype was built. Launched in August 2001, the prototype is used as a floating laboratory. April 2001: Creation of a shipbuilding yard in Larros with, at its head, Thierry Eluère responsible for the construction of the 60-feet to come.


Catamaran is due to be launched and baptized September 2003, after that it will undergo series of sea trails before start Transat Jacques Vabre race 2003. Yves Parlier has also planed series of record attempts between 2003 and 2006.

The innovations
The stepped hull

The principle of the stepped hulls was invented to enable the seaplanes to take off and land at high speed. They enable to obtain a dynamic strain on water and facilitate the squat of the hulls at a certain speed. They also avoid braking during take off and landing. The hull's speed is thus not limited. Some seaplanes take off at a speed of more than 250km/h and some engine catamarans using stepped hulls can reach a highest speed of 260km/h.

Multihulls of today function thanks to the Archimedes' principle whatever their speed may be. The drag of such hulls increases with the speed squared blocking the access to averages ranging from 40 to 50 knots. Thanks to stepped hulls or sea-plane hulls, the dynamic lift centre is forward of the hydrostatic lift center and enables it to be opposed to the pitch down momentum of the aerodynamic force.

Our multihull when reaching a certain pace will come out of the water and be borne by 3 m2 forward of the step. At 40 knots, the drag of the stepped hull is 4 times lower than that of an Archimedean hull and remains stable at any speed.

Once mastered, this innovation enabled us to explore new speed limits.
Seaplane hulls are structurally more reliable and thus enable us to fulfill perfectly our initial specifications: sail faster and safer.

The double rig
Current trimarans are more than 18 meters wide for 5.5 to 6 tons of load displacement. Our aim, being that of building a lighter boat, it implied the need to design a catamaran (removal of the central hull).
Despite a width inferior to trimarans, to have a single mast placed on the forward beam would have been prohibitive in terms of weight. Indeed, on a 15 meter wide catamaran the compression of a single mast would become such as it would need a huge beam to support it.

On the other hand, to optimize both the sail area and the height of the lift and effort centre (centre of effort), to double the rig was necessary. It's thus the configuration of a two wing-mast (rotary and non-canting) placed on the forward beam, one meter inwards of the platform, which was retained.

The double rig exerts its strain almost at the level of the hulls, thus enabling shaped beams to provide the link between the two hulls and not to support a single mast.
Moreover, with a fast multihull, by light or medium wind, the relative wind, even when running, is located forward the abeam which enables the leeward rig to avoid being masked by the windward rig.

On an equal sail area with the trimarans, the air draught of 24,5 meters (height of the mast:
22 meters) is by far lower which makes it reliable.

Yves Parlier was born on the 14th November
1960. Married and father of two children, he lives in Archachon.
Composite engineer, it's his passion for sailing that led him to work in this branch.
In 1985, at twenty-four, he wins the Mini-Transat on his own boat and in 1991, the Solitaire du Figaro. In 1992, for his first participation in the Vendée Globe, he finishes fourth after dismasting. In the same year, he wins the Transat Anglaise. Nothing can stop him:

1993, he wins the Route du Café; 1994, the Route du Rhum. In 1997, with
Eric Tabarly, they finish first at the Transat Jacques Vabre and at the same occasion beat the speed record. Then in 1998, Yves Parlier and his team win the Route de l'Or and in 1999 the Course de l'Europe (European Race).
Yves is fascinated by extreme sports and paragliding. In 1998 as he was testing a new wing he has an accident: a 200-meter fall. Badly injured, he ends up with multiple fractures: tibia, fibula and hip and his sciatic nerve is damaged.

Nonetheless, Yves sticks to his convictions and doesn't give up. Backed by his team, he gets back on his feet. His aim: run the Vendée Globe, the Everest of the Seas. On the 5th of November 2000, he is on the starting line at the Sables d'Olonne. Yves does not only want to win the race but above all fulfill his dream. " Only victory is glorious…"used to say Michel Malinovsky, skipper present at the first Route du Rhum. Yves Parlier prefers Bernard Moitessier's philosophy, for which "only the adventure counts". And the one Yves is about to livenis miraculous. After leading the race three weeks in a row, he dismasts near Kerguelen. The question of abandoning never crosses his mind. The bay of the isle of Stewart shelters Aquitaine
Innovations and his skipper two weeks, during which Yves repairs his boat. Once the mast is fixed, Yves Parlier comes back in the race, with his mindset to finish it. On the 16th
March 2001, after 126 days, 23 hours and 16 minutes, Yves Parlier crosses the finish line and takes the 13th place but becomes a hero for the French.


Key sponsor -
Région Aquitaine
The members of the Aquitaine Regional Council are convinced that Yves Parlier's new project is based on the right technological choices and will have excellent impact on the local economy, education and sport as well as attracting excellent media coverage. They have thus voted to channel 4.5 million Euros in investment subsidies for the period 2001-2006 into research and business organizations aimed at assisting this local mariner to achieve further successes.
The Aquitaine Regional Council are thus strengthening their position as key spon-sors of this project, which has developed out of research by a young team of engi-neers and several companies in the area.

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