Prepare to be amazed by the PoliTo Sailing Team’s latest creation, unveiled at Maker Faire Rome 2023. This isn’t your typical boat; it’s a cutting-edge vessel that doesn’t just sail; it soars gracefully over the water, and it’s engineered with a green twist that’s changing the game.
Sara Cantalini, a mechanical engineering student from the Polytechnic University of Turin and a vital part of the boat’s development team, excitedly shares the details of this pioneering project. “Behold, a boat that defies gravity on water,” she exclaims. This extraordinary achievement is made possible through cleverly designed appendages that generate lift, elevating the boat and enabling it to glide. An intricate control system ensures stability throughout this remarkable journey.
At the heart of this innovation lies a sophisticated control system that blends mechanical and electronic ingenuity. The mechanical component capitalizes on the natural rhythm of the waves, while ultrasonic sensors are harnessed for precise electronic control.
But what truly sets this boat apart is its unwavering commitment to sustainability. Cantalini emphasizes, “Let’s dive into the materials because sustainability is at the core of this boat. We employ mineral fiber with resin, and our molds are crafted from MDF.”
Furthermore, the boat’s components are highly recyclable, and the team has meticulously documented the sustainability of their materials. Cantalini adds, “We’ve published many articles and papers, shedding light on the sustainability of our materials and the prospect of reusing them post-lamination.”
The boat’s lightweight construction, achieved through the innovative use of Okume and balsa wood, significantly reduces its overall weight, weighing in at approximately 40 to 50 kg, with the honey hull coming in at around 18 kg. The practical result of these innovations is the boat’s impressive top speed of up to 17 knots, equivalent to a swift 35 km/hour.
The PoliTo Sailing Team’s creative use of materials and the fusion of advanced engineering techniques reflect a deep commitment to sustainable design, making waves in mechanical engineering and maritime innovation.