The HydroContest

The HydroContest is an engineering competition organised by the Hydros Foundation featuring teams of students from universities across the world, taking place in St Tropez in France. The 2017 event comprised 23 teams from as far afield as Colombia and Malaysia. To compete the team has to design, and build two boats. These vessels then compete in three races, for which they have been specialised designed for.


Race Prizes

The three races to compete in:

  • lightweight in which the vessel must carry 20kg and race around a 600m course.
  • heavyweight in which the vessel must carry 200kg and race around the same 400m course as the lightweight races.
  • long distance, in which the vessel must complete as many laps of roughly 300m as possible in one hour whilst carrying 20kg. The boat that goes the furthest wins.

The contest challenges the teams to work towards the Hydros Foundation goal of fostering maritime efficiency in all forms.

Off-Race Prizes

As well as the races there are also six off race prizes

  • The communication prize (which we won in 2016) - which looks at the ways in which the team has promoted themselves and the contest in different forms of media
  • the eco-conception prize – for sustainability of construction
  • innovation in the lightweight category
  • innovation in the heavyweight category
  • design for the best overall visual design
  • the HydroSpirit award, voted for by the teams
Multiple Boats

Although maritime focused, the project is about much more than the race week itself. It requires a great deal of effort, time and commitment from a brilliant team who come from a wide range of disciplines. Project management, public relations and logistics are all critical to our success. We have an extensive communications and outreach programme throughout the year to share our experiences and challenges with others and inspire future generations of engineers.

The HydroContest is a fantastic project and experience, providing a place to practice all necessary engineering skills from idea and concept design through the design phase, design for manufacture, construction, testing and repairing on-site during the competition. All of these stages are equally important, and these are skills which can only be learned, improved and honed as part of a real engineering project.

Key Rules:

  • The boat must fit within a “box rule” of 2.5 x 2.5 x 2.0 metres
  • Hydros supply a 1.4kW propulsion motor, motor controller, and a 36V, 7.8Ah battery

More details are given in the official rule set, available from the HydroContest website.

Email:  |  Call: +44(0)7543 645 579  |  Visit: B185, Boldrewood Campus, Southampton, SO16 7QF