Today, you can find the deck featuring the aerodynamic “dome” everywhere on the bow of Filippi boats. But it is interesting to find out how this choice ended up being consolidated and where it got its inspiration from.
In our engineering laboratories, it is said that the inspiration came from the images of a spacecraft from a successful sci-fi TV series titled “Space 1999”. It certainly all started with the request to manufacture a corner-free deck (which is still used in the 4+ only because the current one would compromise the coxswain visibility) for aerodynamic (look at the fluidynamics simulation, aesthetic and weight optimization reasons. So much so that we first proposed an additional “dome” (fixed with Velcro to the deck) to be installed on the deck, before transitioning to a single body that primarily favored the aerodynamic boat’s penetration
example from wing section of flow (red line) around a rounded surface (green)
The decks of Filippi boats,both bow and stern are currently made in an autoclave to ensure rigidity and durability and eliminate the markings of the honeycomb that makes up the structure. To achieve this result, the layering uses zylon fabric for cut resistance and Kevlar honeycomb for mechanical resistance to compression. However, we went further and resorted to nanotechnology and elastomers present in the resins that impregnate the fabrics, as they give even more elasticity to an already rigid structure. Before being fixed with specific structural adhesives to the boat shell, the decks integrating the characteristic aerodynamic dome are modeled according to the profile of the range of shells available, by a numerical control machine. We then proceed to quality control tests before their anchoring and painting.
It is clear that, once the performance is guaranteed, the resilience of the decks of Filippi boats is helpful in case of accidents in the water absorbing the contact. On the other hand, rowers are required to pay attention to positioning the boats on the appropriate racks at their club or on the venue. First of all not to place the boats on the deck. Even more so today, as they are no longer wedge-shaped but rounded in their widest area.