Telefonica Movistar

Telefonica Movistar 04th November 2005

Telefonica Movistar, the Spanish V70 entry for the forthcoming Volvo Ocean Race 2005/6 has been turning heads not only for covering a record-breaking 530 nautical miles in 24 hours in April 2005. Constructed from a female mould and manufactured with SP’s revolutionary low temperature epoxy prepreg, SE70, the structure is lightweight, robust and with it’s clear coated carbon hull, looks absolutely striking.

Early in 2004, a number of prominent raceboat builders around the world started looking for a package of materials and engineering which could help impart an all-important edge to their forthcoming Volvo 70 builds. One such builder was renowned Australian yard, Boatspeed.

Historically, Boatspeed’s preferred build method had been to utilise long open-time catalytic wet systems, such as SP Ampreg 22 with the 3 Day Hardener recently used to build Nicorette.

However, when it came to selecting materials for Telefonica Movistar, one of the latest generation of carbon/Nomex Volvo 70’s, the Telefonica team took the decision to move forward with SP’s new 70°C curing range of prepregs and adhesive films, and Boatspeed rose to the manufacturing challenge of this new technology.

For the last decade, SP’s marine product range had been dominated by the 80°C curing SE84 range of products, which has been widely and successfully used by raceboat builders around the world.

However the recently launched 70°C curable product range, consisting of SE70 toughened Prepregs and Adhesive Films, patented ST70 SPRINT® and SF70 Surfacing Films, allowed even greater advances in build technology. These products combine all the structural performance and handling benefits of the original 80°C curing systems with significant ease-of-use and dimensional accuracy gains for the builder.

Telefonica’s decision to move to this next level of manufacturing technology and control, combined with the suberb laminating skills and attention to detail of the Boatspeed yard, has proved to be an inspired one, resulting in a World Speed Record breaking yacht.

On seeing the quality of the hull construction as it came out of Boatspeed’s mould, Olympic 49er medallist and Telefonica crew member Iker Martinez declared “It doesn’t get any better than this! It’s a first class effort and an example of fantastic teamwork. There is no doubt Boatspeed was a great place to carry out the construction”.

Key to achieving this outstanding result was the decision to use SE70 in a female composite mould. As had already been demonstrated with the IMS 54 CAM, the excellent flow characteristics of the SE70 prepregs have been specifically formulated to provide near-perfect surface finish, producing the minimum parasitic weight on demoulding.

When Measured by the Volvo 70 ruling committee it was commented that the boat was on the projected minimum; this effort then allowed further advances in keel weight which further delighted the Telefonica Team.

SP has been involved in all aspects of the build, from the SE70 structural materials in the hull, deck, canards and rudder to the wet Ampreg materials used for the mould tool, Corecell™ foam core and the Spabond Adhesives used for all bonding operations. Allied to this, SP Technologies’ input to optimisation of the structural engineering has made this a project with which SP has been proud to be associated.