Wednesday, November 11, 2009

BMW Oracle Racing wing takes flight

Yesterday the BMW Oracle Racing team took their BOR90 trimaran for a sail off San Diego in its "version 4.0" configuration - with the world's largest wing replacing the soft sails of earlier trials.

The "2-element" wing is raised from the port side with a massive gin-pole. The aft "element" of the wing is divided into 6 sections which appear to be controlled independently, allowing its "twist" to be tuned.

Getting the BOR 90 away from the dock after the wing was attached for the first time was a complicated process. The wing needed to be attached to the boat in near calm conditions, before helmsman James Spithill carefully maneuvered away from the dock with the wing down, in a horizontal position, assisted by numerous RIBs. Apparently, while the wing is attached the boat swing at a mooring - since it won't be possible to de-power the rig at the dock.

All photos © Gilles Martin-Raget / BMW Oracle Racing. Used with permission.

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