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Non-destructive testing of the composite parts of Arnaud Boissières' monohull

News International-French

17 Sep 2015

Groupe Institut de Soudure and Composite Integrity have carried out non-destructive testing on the composite parts of IMOCA, the Open 60 monohull to be piloted by Arnaud Boissières, skipper and holder of the SNSM record.

The aim of this intervention from partners of Le Bateau des Métiers by Aerocampus is to check the condition of the materials in order to ensure human safety and the integrity of the structures of the composite parts on-board the monohull.

Reinforced testing in the name of performance and safety
For three days, a team of experienced controllers from Groupe Institut de Soudure and Composite Integrity concentrated on the mast, the rudders and the boom, as well as on the reinforcing elements in the inner hull. "We take advantage of the experience and the presence of our two partners in Sables d‘Olonne to really push the checks to their limits, on other elements subjected to extreme stresses", stated Arnaud Boissières.

After removing the mast and transporting it to the workshop, the mast, which is 27 metres long, was examined at 700 different points. The boom and the rudders were also inspected. "The boat undergoes an ultrasonic scan to ensure there is no pre-damage", explained Jérôme Raynal, sales director of Composite Integrity. Tap tests were also carried out to detect any faults in the glued assemblies.

Thanks to the expertise of the controllers, IMOCA underwent non-destructive testing in optimal conditions using cutting-edge techniques, which are notably used for aircraft.

Expertise from the aeronautics field applied to the nautical world
The project to get this racing yacht ready began in Aérocampus Aquitaine. The South-West of France is a flagship of the nautical industry, with over 400 companies present, 2,400 employees and over 300 million euros of annual turnover. The objective of Le Bateau des Métiers by Aérocampus is to prepare a racing yacht for the Vendée Globe in the form of a training workshop, where all skills of the South-West – naval and aeronautic – will be visible for all to see.

Non-destructive testing by Groupe Institut de Soudure and Composite Integrity, its 50% subsidiary along with PPE, is one of the skills of the project's financial and technical partners. Certified Nadcap NDT for aeronautics, Composite Integrity is a platform in Europe, bringing the most effective control technologies together in the same place. "Le Bateau des Métiers by Aérocampus enables exchanges between industrial partners from different horizons", added Arnaud Boissières.

On the Transat Jacques Vabre starting line
Arnaud Boissières and his co-skipper Stanislas Maslard will be taking to the seas on-board IMOCA on 25th October for the start of the Transat Jacques Vabre. "We are very proud to be partners of Le Bateau des Métiers by Aerocampus, and we are convinced that the quality of the materials from which it is made will allow Arnaud Boissières and Stanislas Maslard to sail a great race in 2015, as well as the next Vendée Globe in November 2016", said Abdelkrim Chehaibou, Research Director of the Group and Managing Director of Institut de Soudure (association) and Chairman of Composite Integrity.

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