Paradoxal Surfing board project
In the charming coastal town of Douarnenez, a groundbreaking initiative in surfing has taken shape. Jérémy Lucas, a local surfer and entrepreneur, has spearheaded the Paradoxal Surfboards project, combining innovation and environmental consciousness to create a remarkable product – 3D-printed surfboards made entirely from green and brown algae.
This visionary endeavor began three years ago when Lucas, deeply involved in biodiversity and ocean preservation efforts, recognized the need for a sustainable alternative in an industry predominantly reliant on petrochemical-derived materials. With a multifaceted background in mechanical design and a passion for surfing, Lucas found himself at the intersection of these interests, setting the stage for a pivotal moment in his entrepreneurial journey.
The inspiration for this eco-friendly surfboard emerged from a convergence of events. Lucas’s dual roles at YSTOPIA and a design consultancy acquainted him with 3D printing technology, particularly the limitations of using plant-based plastic derived from cornstarch. Realizing the environmental drawbacks of this material, coupled with a personal experience of falling ill after encountering stranded green algae during a surf session, became the catalyst for change.
The Paradoxal Surfboards project, honored by the prestigious Ocean Pitch Challenge 2023, is on the brink of realization, promising a game-changing shift in the surfing industry. The innovative boards, created from a specially formulated algae-based 3D-printable material, are set to revolutionize the sport’s environmental footprint.
To bring this concept to life, a series of pivotal steps were taken. Designing a surfboard from scratch required intricate industrial design and CAD/CAM skills, ensuring an optimal balance between innovation, performance, and production efficiency. The subsequent stages involved 3D printing the board’s core using the newly developed algae-based material and expertise in lamination techniques for waterproofing.
Utilizing biomimicry principles, the internal structure of the boards draws inspiration from diatoms, incorporating a honeycomb design that optimizes both performance and environmental sustainability. Approximately 2 kg of raw algae is processed to create the boards, significantly reducing their carbon footprint.
The resulting surfboards boast exceptional performance, offering remarkable flexibility and maneuverability due to the unique internal design. Paradoxal Surfboards is set to commence pre-sales of the ALGAE short board model in March 2024, marking a pivotal moment in the company’s journey toward a more sustainable surfing future.
The company is exploring the possibilities of 3D printing in other water sports, promising further innovation in eco-friendly equipment. The imminent release of these bio-sourced surfboards signals a new era in surfing, inviting surfers to engage in a more environmentally conscious and responsible practice.