Vendee Globe

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by Manie B, Jan 12, 2009.

  1. Manie B
    Joined: Sep 2006
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    Location: Cape Town South Africa

    Manie B Senior Member

    Gents - how does a Vendee Globe boat generate all that electricity ??

    I am a huge fan of both the Volvo and Vendee races and have read the Vendee webpage a lot

    http://www.vendeeglobe.org/en/

    http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=vendee globe&search_type=&aq=0&oq=vendee

    i cant figure out where does a Vendee get ALL THAT ELECTRICITY

    Many computers - cameras - autopilot and and and
    its like a space ship inside
    a couple of solar panels on the roof surely cant do that
    BEEEEG batteries - no no no
    Trailing generator under the boat that i cant see???
    Diesel Generator ??? must be :D :D

    can anybody shed some light (no pun) he he
    on this electrifying subject

    please i dont wanna hear about politics / economy and who has insulted who :D :D :D

    and while we are on the subject of the design of a Vendee any other interesting facts - like what toilet :cool:

    HERE IS A MUST SEE VIDEO

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=42TThXBuBgs

    surfs up boys :D
     
  2. marshmat
    Joined: Apr 2005
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    Location: Ontario

    marshmat Senior Member

    A few articles I've seen on this year's Vendee have mentioned some boats having problems with diesel generators (Steve White's boat reportedly blew a hose of some kind on the generator in early Nov. which set him back a ways), so I imagine they're running those at least part of the time.

    What amazes me about the battery banks on Vendee, Volvo and other high-tech raceboats is the number of electrical fires that we've been seeing every time someone drops a bolt or wrench into the carbon battery box. Solar car racers have known for 20 years that carbon is conductive and will cause a fire if you build a battery box from it. Why haven't high-dollar racing teams clued in that you need to use Kevlar or S/E-glass here, or at least line the thing with Kapton?
     
  3. DGreenwood
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    DGreenwood Senior Member

    The volvo rule requires the bat box to be lined with E-glass.

    The power for both the Volvo boats and the Vendee boats comes primarily from generators. In the Vendee some of the guys have taken to having wind generators again. The solar panels produce quite a lot of power as well. There is a lot of available surface area there.

    And Manie...all the toilets are custom carbon most built on the cheapo plastic base and pump from Groco.
    Despite the appearance of huge power usage, by far the lions share of the power, in the case of the Vendee, goes to the Autopilot
     
  4. marshmat
    Joined: Apr 2005
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    marshmat Senior Member

    Good to hear they've fixed the battery box issue in the Volvo, DG. Still, that's one of those things that should be obvious enough to the engineers that it's a bit sad that it has to be explicitly stated in the rules....

    Are you serious about the carbon head?
     
  5. amolitor
    Joined: Jan 2005
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    Location: San Francisco

    amolitor Junior Member

    Vendee boats use buckets for heads.
     
  6. DGreenwood
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    DGreenwood Senior Member

    Some do some don't.


    Yup I am serious. I can build you one if you want. The Volvo rule requires a head. I haven't seen all of them but I can't imagine anybody would do anything else but use carbon. Funny thing is the rule also requires a pressure water sink in the head area. They all have sinks the size of dixie cups with tiny little tubing running to them. They never get turned on.
     
  7. DGreenwood
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    DGreenwood Senior Member

    The engineers are usually nowhere near that sort of thing. The designers don't have much to do with it either except for weight placement calcs.

    It goes something like this:

    Systems guy: You need to line the carbon bat box with something to prevent fire.

    Shore manager: Does it say that in the rules?

    Systems guy: No but...

    Shore Manager: Can you make it as light?

    Systems Guy: No but...

    Shore manager: Then forget it.
     
  8. PortTacker
    Joined: Nov 2008
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    Location: Oregon USA

    PortTacker Junior Member


    They only use those on the slowest cruiser class.
     
  9. Guest62110524

    Guest62110524 Previous Member

    Vendee Globe body unhappy at pullouts

    The governing body which manages the rules and class of yachts used in the gruelling around the world Vendee Globe race said on Monday it was unhappy at the large number of pullouts during this year's event.

    The IMOCA Class Association (International 60 feet Monohull Open Class Association) said it believed it was necessary to strive to improve the reliability of the boats.

    "IMOCA is obviously not satisfied with the high proportion of pullouts," the organisation said in a statement.

    "We will have to reflect (on how to) make the boats ever more reliable in the interest of the owners, the sponsors and, above all, the sailors themselves."

    By Monday, 64 days into the contest and with more than three weeks to go, 18 vessels out of an initial 30 had pulled out, in the teeth of the worst storms the event has seen in 12 years.

    At the weekend, British sailor Mike Golding, one of those forced to abandon his challenge, questioned the safety of the new-generation racing boats.

    Golding, whose boat Ecover 3 was dismasted in the Southern Ocean only hours after taking the lead in the 27,000-mile race, was furious at the keel problems experienced by several competitors.

    "Engineers have a lot of questions to answer, and the designers," the 48-year-old skipper said, quoted by the Sunday Times newspaper.

    Golding was also concerned about the keelhead failure that had caused Swiss skipper Dominique Wavre to abandon, the paper said, given they had similar keel designs and that he had noticed cracking around the casing three weeks earlier.

    This year's race has been packed with dramatic withdrawals, most notably by Vincent Riou, who won the last edition of the solo, non-stop, round-the-world yacht race in 2005 but who lost his mast in the rescue of fellow Frenchman Le Cam a day earlier while rounding Cape Horn off the tip of South America.

    Frenchman Michel Desjoyeaux currently leads the race, with fellow Frenchman Roland Jourdain 340 nautical miles behind in second.

    On Monday afternoon, Desjoyeaux was in the southern Atlantic Ocean some 4,935 nautical miles from the finish in western France
     
  10. bobothehobo
    Joined: Nov 2004
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    bobothehobo Junior Member

    Not for a Vendee or a Volvo boat, but I once built a 70,000 USD custom carbon toilet...
     
  11. DGreenwood
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    DGreenwood Senior Member

    And that didn't include the magazine rack!
     
  12. Manie B
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    Location: Cape Town South Africa

    Manie B Senior Member

    Thanks for the input guys
    jeez its nice to know that i am not the only one on this forum hooked on Vendee:D

    please post links of the "technical" stuff when you come across something of interest because it is becoming difficult to to search ALL the pages to find stuff

    i see that Raymarine instruments feature a lot - any ideas on which autopilot / systems ? and by the way which diesel generators and how much fuel on board??
     
  13. DGreenwood
    Joined: Aug 2004
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    DGreenwood Senior Member

    Power generation is a major issue during the design of these boats. Max stored amp hours/Kg is the question. This of course is tempered by the need for redundancy. The solar panels you see on these boats are really heavy. That weight carried as diesel would probably provide more power but the panels are there in case the Gen goes down.
    Raymarine does not rate very well among the ocean racers. NKE and B&G rule. I can say that under the kind of stress those guys put their autopilots through the Raymarine doesn't seem to cut it.
    The Vendee boats have varying charging systems. Sometimes they use the drive engine with large alternators to charge with. I think the Lambardini is still the lightest available engine but most still use Yanmars I believe. I forgot to mention that the canting keel can be another very consumptive devise. They try very hard to use that pump as little as possible.
     
  14. Manie B
    Joined: Sep 2006
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    Location: Cape Town South Africa

    Manie B Senior Member

    Guys what i cant understand is how little (if any) technical infomation is available on the Vendee :mad:

    is this supposed to be a secret or something?

    i have been all over their webpage - still nothing

    does anybody know where one can find info / photos of the inside of a boat ?
     

  15. DGreenwood
    Joined: Aug 2004
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    DGreenwood Senior Member

    When first built the systems are often closely guarded secrets. Older generations are viewable.There is not that much in the way of pictures or diagrams out there because the concepts for the really interesting stuff is complex enough that few people are interested. Water ballasting systems, for example, are a dark art these days. Canting keels, the same. The information is available, just not easily.

    These things evolve so quickly that the most recent techniques are learned through experimentation by the dozen or so major designers and the few builders and shore crew that are familiar with this stuff.
    As an example, in the next Vendee I expect that batteries and charging systems will be completely different and the weights involved there will have reduced enough to effect the race outcome. Over the coming four years, in races like the Route du Rhum and the Transat races this stuff will be tested and refined and designers will design around this gear and its weight. The information pertaining to the testing and application of these developments is walking around in the gourds of the few who work on these things.

    What exactly did you want to see in them.I might be able to point you to some stuff.
     
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