Innovation award for DNA supertramp
Enzo Ferrari once said that aerodynamics are only for people who cannot build engines. For starters, we do not build engines and we are also resticted in power in the A class – as such we focus on other areas for performance gains.
The Foiling Week have announced today that DNA has won an award at their 2016 awards for the DNA supertramp as an industry innovation. This new trampoline was introduced on the F1 A-cat earlier this year and will be used on a rather cool forthcoming design too.
The original idea started when our team rider Mischa Heemskerk was preparing his boat for the 2014 A-cat Worlds. In a quest for improved aero we set out to create a fully enclosed trampoline area. Since the A cat platform is not demountable and thus permanently together, it also made sense to permanently attach the trampoline to the platform. We started with a 3DI trampoline as a lightweight closed trampoline which was structurally bonded to the A-cat platform. The lifespan of that solution was however less than expected so we needed something else, and a normal carbon sandwich deck would be too heavy.
We had an idea how to achieve a very lightweight carbon skin which would be strong enough for the local loads and impacts too. We set out making many, many samples for testing and evaluation. Samples that passed the crude testing phase were bonded onto a jig so we could start doing measured testing. It has taken us a few months before we identified the right laminate and type of resin to create a material with superior strength and stiffness in a flexible format, as well as being able to be produced with relative ease. To increase the resistance against tear we incorporated a bulletproof material as a base fabric.
From the very start, the DNA F1 was designed such that the bonding area would be one plane to facilitate the structural bonding of the trampoline onto the boat.
Our solution may have been derived from a quest for aero improvements yet there are more advantages. It saves local reinforcements in the hull for the screws to attach a traditional trampoline to, it saves the actual mounting of the screw and most importantly; it eliminates the never ending tightening of the trampoline.