Slovenian studio Mides Design has opened up about its patented Aero Sail concept, which promises a wide range of benefits for sailing superyachts.
The rig, which has been tested on a 5.4 metre prototype, could be scaled up for use on yachts up to 120 metres, the studio claims.
Instead of a traditional mast, the Aero Sail is built around an A-frame, which is then fitted with a rotating carbon boom mounted on a central pivot point.
Erik Šifrer, creative director of Mides Design, added: “The aim was to create a sail plan for medium to big boats with a beautiful aesthetic impact that is extremely easy to handle and easy to build.”
The benefits are numerous, with the carbon frame offering a more efficient transfer of forces into the hull, while the in-boom furling eliminates the need for shrouds, sheets, genoa tracks, blocks, winches or any other deck hardware.
As well as a 40% weight saving, this allows for much clearer deck spaces, opening up the possibility of helicopter operations on sailing superyachts over 56 metres.
Mides Design foresees benefits for superyacht interiors as well, as there is no need to design the GA around a central mast. The studio has also considered the Panamax air draught limitation, with its 70 metre ketch concept featuring a folding mast.
The next stage for the Aero Sail concept is a 19.2 metre yacht that is currently under construction. Whether this cutting edge sailing technology is embraced by the superyacht world remains to be seen.