Sailing Yachts

Sailing Performance Analysis and Optimization

Doyle CFD uses high resolution simulation data to optimize sailing yacht aerodynamics, hydrodynamics and structures. Our analysis and designs are driven by data from state-of-the-art Computational Fluid Dynamic (CFD) and Finite Element Analysis (FEA) simulations.  We have experience analyzing and designing most major sailing yacht components from sails to foils.  In addition to simulating performance we also analyze sailing performance data and help customers efficiently collect data from onboard systems using proprietary hardware and software solutions.    



We use a number of hydrodynamic analysis tools to study the flow around hulls and foils.  When quick calculations are needed we use empirical force models based on tank testing and CFD data.  When more detailed analysis is needed we use RANS VOF to model both free surface and turbulent effects.  We have experience analyzing a wide range of boat types from planning sport boats to mega yachts.  We offer a full range of hydrodynamic sailboat modeling from lifting foil analysis to complete sailing force analysis. 


Sailing aerodynamics is our specialty.  From sail shape optimization to sail force predictions we offer a full range of aerodynamic sailing solutions.   We model the aerodynamic forces on the sails, rigs and superstructures using steady state RANS CFD.  RANS CFD accurately captures turbulent flow effects important for sailing such as separation, viscous drag and wakes.  RANS CFD simulations model the three dimensional air flow field around the boat, not just the surface forces.  Post processing the CFD data can lead to valuable insights as to what flow characteristics drive performance.  



Structural Analysis

We specialize in composite FEA so we can model most structures commonly found on sail boats.  We couple forces calculated in our CFD programs to FEA models to determine structural reactions.  In addition to determining wind loads on sails, we also have the capability to analyze hardware, rigging and hulls. Once we determine the aerodynamics of a sail, we can translate the forces onto other parts of the boat and predict how they will affect performance. We can also calculate induced structural loads and stresses in the sails, rigging and hull. We can provide you with accurate data for corner loads, fabric stresses and deformations, enabling you to make the best choices for fabric selection and fiber layout. 

Sailing Data Analysis

We are experts at collecting and analyzing sailing performance data.  Whether you are looking for advice on configuring a new system, need a custom sensor designed or need help analyzing data from an existing system we can help.  We hae experience designing and building data logging system for yachts ranging from small one designs to mega yachts.  If you need sail flying shape information either in real time or to post process we have developed our own shape stripe analysis system that can be used with a wide range of cameras from GoPro's to high end networked cameras to imbedded cameras running on Gigabit Eithernet networks.

Velocity Prediction Program (VPP)

Doyle CFD provides yacht designers and owners Velocity Prediction Program (VPP) services to evaluate and optimize designs.  The three main components of the VPP analysis are the aerodynamic force model, the hydrodynamic force model and an algorithm to balance the forces and predict sailing states.  Aerodynamic and hydrodynamic data can be calculated empirically, calibrated from existing sailing data, or calculated using RANS CFD.  Our designs are driven by data from state-of-the-art Computational Fluid Dynamic (CFD) simulations.  We can answer questions ranging from whether a yacht is in balance, how much a sail plan change will improve VMG, or whether an appendage modification is worth the handicap penalty.



Our advanced rendering and animation capabilities are used to visualize complex data, illustrate design concepts and create stunning marketing materials. We combine our experience as sailors, engineers and artists to bring your designs and our analysis to life. Ask about our licensing or for-purchase rendering packages. These can be completed for existing or past projects as well.