The Maritime Research Institute Netherlands (MARIN) plans to use its Houston, Texas office to reel in business from the North American yachting sector. Until now, the office dealt only with the offshore business – a sector that in recent years has gone into a downturn.

Speaking to IBI at the Monaco Yacht Show, Atheendra Sreenivasan, a MARIN USA hydrodynamic engineer, said he attended the 2016 Ft Lauderdale International Boat Show to get acquainted with the high-end yachting sector. “In Houston we are 100% focused on offshore,” he said. “We are trying to see if we can develop a yachting market for us there.”

Sreenivasan said any tank and model testing for North American clients would be done at MARIN in the Netherlands. Founded in 1929, MARIN is active in powering performance, seakeeping and manoeuvring, shallow water effects, cavitation, vibration and noise in a series of tanks. It employs around 350 people and has an annual turnover of €42m.

MARIN is active in research for the commercial and yachting sectors. It recently put a scale model of Team AkzoNobel, one of two Dutch entries in the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race, through tank tests, checking added resistance in waves through calculations, scale 1:6 model tests and validation of onboard measurements.

“We did model tests and Computational Fluid Dynamics calculations in heavy sea waves,” said Enrico Della Valentina, MARIN’s Yacht Market Coordinator. “This is important information for the skipper as Velocity Prediction Programs only tell you what your speed is in calm weather.”