Sunday February 14 2010 / Science & Technology

As the 33rd America's Cup is currently underway in Valencia between the giant multihulls of the Swiss defender Alinghi and their American challenger, BMW Oracle Racing, we thought it may be a good time to introduce another revolutionary high-speed boat from Switzerland, the Mirabaud LX.

The flying boat Mirabaud LX foiler was designed by Swiss engineer Thomas Jundt. The boat start to fly on the foils with 9 knots and has sailed faster than 23 knots.

Conceived around a structure of carbon fiber tubes, this boat is a concentrate of high technology. Every single element has been optimized in order to reduce the overall weight and allow it to fly on its foils as quickly as possible. As of today, it is the only “hull less” boat on earth. While marginal floatability remains, it is only to prevent the boat from sinking until it reaches flying speeds at approximately 8 knots.

The boat has been described as having 'no hull', but more precisely, it has no need for a traditional floating hull in the right conditions: a claim given solid credibility when the boat was sailied on its hydrofoils with no buoyancy - no hull - at all. 

Jundt's concept was further proven when Mirabaud LX won the classic 2009 Geneva-Rolle race on Lake Geneva in a record breaking time and in front of a very competitive fleet of high-tech sailing boats.

Mirabaud LX’s crew comprises Antoine Ravonel, helmsman and boat captain, Thomas Jundt, project manager and crew member, and Eric Gobet, no1. Other members of the project include the coach and former Olympic sailor Jean-Pierre Ziegert, sail designer Jean-Marc Monnard, boat designer Sébastien Schmidt and French engineer Hugues De Turkheim, consultant for the foils.

Suggested by
Ian Skellern