Newsletter 4 - SP80, thriving in-house! - 03.04.2020

New partners, new licences !

SP80 thriving under Confinement!

Worrying news on every outlet, holing up inside our homes, EPFL facilities closing down... In these trying times, the best actions we can take are to follow the authorities’ advice, stay at home, and wait for the situation to blow over. And there is no better activity than working on SP80 to take our minds off things!

Thanks to the licences from our new valued partners, the team's momentum is relaunched!

The mechanical systems team is immersing itself in the 3DEXPERIENCE universe. Dassault Systèmes provided SP80 students with the 3DEXPERIENCE platform academic licence in order to work on their credited projects. It enables us to use most of the necessary numeric tools on our own computers while collaborating on the same interface. Given the recent disturbance in working habit it is a huge asset for the team to be able to centralize the boat design and to work remotely.

Meanwhile, the fluid dynamics team is learning to use Orca3D Marine CFD to its full potential. With the aid of this software, birthed from the collaboration of Orca3D and Simerics, we are able to easily and quickly perform CFD studies on our design. It is a useful tool to simulate alternative designs in order to better understand the behaviour of the boat, ensure the dynamic stability of our hull and minimize its drag. Basically, having a CFD simulation software is essential to avoid water tests ending in crashes!

Neural Concept

Design improvement using deep learning

We are proud to announce a new partnership with Neural Concept. Neural Concept is an EPFL startup developing a software to apply deep-learning to Computer Aided Engineering. Their algorithm, called Neural Concept Shape, learns to predict outputs of computer simulations or experiments based on the input’s shape. Using Neural Concept Shape, we will be able to reduce our computation time to milliseconds, allowing us to further optimize the boat design and ultimately gain the precious knots needed to break the world record.

Meet the team
Episode 2 - Charles de Sarnez

Video: Charles' interview

Discover new portraits of team members in the next newsletters.

This month, Charles talks about the work done in numerical fluid dynamics. Charles is the leader and coordinator of the fluid dynamics team. He currently works with Neural Concept in order to improve the foil's profile using deep learning. Learn more about him in this video.

Follow this link to listen to Charles' interview.

Some news from Georges-Henri's garage!

Georges-Henri working

Prototyping is a tricky business, especially when your usual facilities are no longer available. Georges-Henri solved this by converting his garage into a workshop! He briefly explains the process of making the hull; from creating a mould all the way to the stratification:

“Hull preparation involves machining the different pieces of the mould, these were sliced using the CNC and glued together in a vacuum. Before moving onto applying layers of carbon fiber I need to mark the spots where the inserts will be put into place. I set out all of my equipment and materials to the side for the stratification phase. Organisation is key for me to work properly and efficiently! I then proceed onto the stratification of the hull, keeping in mind that we want a robust structure.”

Finally, it’s time to iron out the details: when the lamination is complete, the only thing left to do is remove tiny defects. We look forward to seeing this prototype on the water!

And what's next? 

Next technical goals:

As many other projects, the difficult current situation is slowing down many student projetcs, in particular the prototyping and experimental studies. However, the team succeeds in overcoming this issue by re-organising the woking process and focussing on topics like CAD and VPP improvement. These last days, SP80 actually seemed to be the best way to spend our overwhelming energy!


New partners have joined the project! We are pleased to work with Neural Concept, Dassault Systèmes, Orca3D and Simerics. The software the team can work with thanks to these partnerships are essential tools for us. 

The team is still looking for new partners to be involved in this adventure as financial and technical supports. All relevant expertise and knowledges are also welcome. Join us to contribute to the success of the project!


Although all the planned events have been canceled, you will still be informed about SP80 and our latest developments through social networks and newsletters!


More interviews about the different projects to come soon. Stay tuned!

Official Partner


Technical Partners

Dassault Systèmes
Neural Concept
3D Precision
La Forge

Institutional Partners


Lausanne, Switzerland

CH: +41 (0)78 672 92 78

FR: +33 (0)7 86 78 05 67