Photo by Jim Hancock
Sailing Science Center News
May 2021
Vol. 4, No. 9
Welcome to the May issue of the Sailing Science Center News! The SSC is gaining momentum as we prepare to roll out a stable of seven new exhibits for a Dry Run event in early May! We are calendared to present those exhibits, plus others we are working on, at traveling, in-person, events in June, July, and August.

In organizations, as on the water and elsewhere, momentum matters, which is why, at this important juncture, we devote this issue to the theme of momentum! Be sure to see our June issue for pictures of the Dry Run event and all the new exhibits.
Momentum begets momentum, and the best way to start is to start.
― Gil Penchina, Former Vice President of eBay International
May Spotlight - Dan Truong
Dan Truong
At age 18, Dan Truong is the SSC’s youngest volunteer, but his wisdom extends far beyond his years. Throughout our interview I was struck by how many of life’s most important lessons he had already learned–things I didn’t figure out until I had blown out far more candles.

One of his early lessons was of the fragility of life. At age 9, a heart condition nearly took his father. Dan was struck with how quickly things could change, teaching him to treasure the moments he had with people.
Dan Truong Playing Tennis
Another early lesson was the importance of work ethic, tenacity, and perseverance. At age 14 Dan started playing tennis as a hobby. He was also swimming, and playing volleyball and soccer, but he liked tennis, so he focused on that. Dan says, to begin with he failed a lot and had to learn to pick himself up and keep going. He recalls that later, when he found himself far behind, there were many times when he persisted and ultimately won. He eventually got serious and started playing 2-3 hours per day. By his senior year he was top ranked, and went undefeated in the league, helping his team win the division title out of 12 schools in South San Jose.
One of the best feelings in the world is achieving something after facing a significant obstacle in your path.
Sandwiched between an older brother and a younger sister, Dan has just finished his freshman year at UC Berkeley. During his first term, Dan joined a volunteer, all-student, pro bono consulting group called 180 Degrees Consulting. It was through this group that Dan became acquainted with the SSC, when his team of 6 undergraduates undertook an assignment to conduct a business analysis of the SSC.
Dan Truong Volunteering for Key Club
Dan volunteering with Key Club
A self-described extrovert, Dan is also very service-oriented, with a natural inclination to lead. In high school, Dan was in Key Club, holding executive positions at both the school level and the district level. He discovered the enjoyment of volunteering through this experience, and by helping to raise money for charities. Today, Dan is volunteering to help the SSC promote our volunteer events. He has been working diligently and responsibly to compose the emails, source the graphics, and manage volunteer responses.
In life it is important to have a mix of things you have to do and things that fulfill you.
Unlike most of our spotlights, you may have noticed that this one does not have a section on when Dan learned to sail, because he has still never been on a sailboat! We hope to change that this summer, as we line up events to start getting SSC volunteers back on the water. With any luck, Dan will take to sailing the way he took to tennis, and we will have a new star on our hands!

It is our pleasure to welcome you aboard and have you on the team, Dan! It’s volunteers like you who make the difference.
Dan Truong at the Boardwalk
Dan at the Santa Cruz Boardwalk
The world is wide and I will not waste my life in friction when it could be turned into momentum.
Frances Willard, American Educator and Suffragist
April Volunteer Event - International Ocean Film Festival
We were delighted in April to offer free passes to SSC volunteers for the International Ocean Film Festival (IOFF). We had scheduled an IOFF event in March of 2021, but had to call it off due to the pandemic. This year the festival was held virtually, so it lacked the social aspect we seek in our volunteer events, but it remained a nice perk for SSC volunteers, with films on sailing, diving, and long-distance rowing. We encourage your support of this worthy organization and their concern for the ocean.
It is easier to maintain momentum than to rebuild it once it is lost.
― Frank Sonnenberg, Author
Sailing Science Corner
In physics, a body's momentum is defined as it's mass times its velocity. Linear momentum shows up in a boat's tendency to hold its speed when it encounters resistance, such as punching through waves, or when tacking, where the the boat's sails briefly lose their drive as the bow passes through the eye of the wind.

Momentum equation: p = mv

p = momentum
m = mass
v = velocity

Momentum plays an outsized roll on multihulls, like catamarans and trimarans, because, in addition to having more friction from their greater wetted surface area compared to a monohull, they lack the heavy ballast keel that gives monohulls momentum through their tacks. A third factor that makes multihulls difficult to tack is the resistance to rotation they have from their wide beam.

It is not uncommon for multihull sailors to backwind their jibs to drive their bows through the eye of the wind. In the short video below (1:46) you will see a trimaran being expertly tacked, with negligible speed loss, as the crew keeps up the boat's momentum by minimizing the time to take the boat through the eye of the wind.

In the News
Coffee Grinder Exhibit
On April 23, we completed paperwork to legally transfer a trailer from America True to the SSC. But it wasn't the trailer that interested us. Rather, it was the exhibit inside the trailer, known as the "Coffee Grinder," that caught our attention.

America True is the nonprofit formed by Dawn Riley and her team to support the all-women's America's Cup team that vied for the Cup in 2000. Now in dissolution, America True is disposing of assets, and through a timely connection made by John Arndt, of Latitude 38, the SSC was able acquire this unique, custom exhibit, that lets visitors use a pedestal winch to raise a small sail, while feeling the force of the sail on an America's Cup yacht. Check out our June newsletter where you will find pictures of the "Grinder" in action.
This Month's Newsletter Banner
The Panamax bulk carrier, Rt. Hon. Paul E. Martin, heads west under the Golden Gate bridge. At nearly 79,000 tons, her momentum underway is at the high end of vessels transiting the Bay. From top speed, a ship like this can take 20-25 minutes, and many miles, to come to a full stop, even with its engines in full reverse. Now that's momentum!
Bulk Carrier Rt. Hon. Paul E. Martin Going Through the Golden Gate
Photo by Jim Hancock
SSC Logo - Light Background
Wanted for the Sailing Science Center

Do you have photos you want to share? The SSC is looking for great shots to use on our newsletter banner and elsewhere. Photographer attribution will be given.

Email your inquiries to
Amazon Smile, Now in the App!

Want to help make a difference while you shop in the Amazon app, at no extra cost to you? Simply follow the instructions below to select "San Francisco Sailing Science Center Inc" as your charity and activate AmazonSmile in the app. Amazon will donate a portion of your eligible mobile app purchases to the SSC.

How it works:
1. Open the Amazon app on your phone
2. Select the main menu (=) & tap on "AmazonSmile" within Programs & Features
3. Select "San Francisco Sailing Science Center Inc" as your charity
4. Follow the on-screen instructions to activate AmazonSmile in the mobile app
Small Stuff
Man scanning the horizon with binoculars
On the Horizon
The SSC has penciled in dates in June, July, and August, for holding in-person events to show our latest exhibits. We will be holding a dry run event early this month In preparation of the other events. At this stage, it appears we have green lights on all our planned events. Look for pictures and reporting in upcoming editions of this newsletter.
Move the Needle!
These are things YOU can do to move the SSC vision forward:

Make a difference. Move the needle!
Leadership Corner - The Big Mo!
In the earliest days of the SSC, I reached out to a mentor with deep experience in starting businesses, operating businesses, and turning businesses around. I asked what advice he had, and he told me one simple thing. Four years later, the wisdom he shared cannot be overstated. Read more...
That's all for this month.


Jim Hancock
President and Founder
The San Francisco Sailing Science Center is a Nonprofit Public Benefit Corporation recognized under IRS Section 501(c)(3), Tax ID 82-3631165. Your donation to the Sailing Science Center is tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.



*STEAM – Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Math

Victoria Marcus

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