Airbus Joins Sailing Team


American Magic, the U.S. challenger for the 36th America’s Cup sailing competition, named Airbus its official innovation partner on Tuesday. Together, they will design, build and test a cutting-edge AC75 Class monohull sailboat in time for the Cup races in 2021. As shown in the AC75 concept video below, the 75-foot boat will incorporate hydrofoil technology, allowing its hull to lift fully out of the water and making Airbus’ aerodynamics expertise particularly useful.

“This is a true challenge for the team to see how they can optimize technological innovation under tight time and resource constraints,” said Airbus Executive Vice President Engineering Jean Brice Dumont. “We love good, clean competition. That’s what pushes us to continually improve at innovating, solve challenges, learn from experience and, ultimately, win.” According to Airbus, the company will provide engineering support for the project, including simulation capabilities development, systems architecture design and testing, hydrodynamic calculation and optimization, boat control and instrumentation.

Airbus also partnered with Oracle Team USA for the 35th America’s Cup, which was held in June 2017. Given shared and parallel technologies in sailing and flying, Airbus says the Oracle partnership resulted in an improved wingtip design for the A350 and instrumentation the company now uses on all aircraft development.

The America’s Cup was first awarded in 1851. The competition is considered one of sailing’s oldest and best-known racing events.