We’ve featured our fair share of yachts over the years. Last year alone, luxury hotel chain The Ritz-Carlton announced that it will offer bespoke cruises on three lavishly built yachts beginning in 2019, while sports car manufacturers like Lexus and Bugatti offered up their takes on speed boats. But it’s start-up SolarImpact who might have the best claim to designing the yacht of the future.
Powered entirely by an array of roof-mounted solar panels and a bank of batteries, the SolarImpact Electric Yacht lets you explore the seas unencumbered by the need for fossil fuel. While the design of the boat is obviously futuristic in itself, it’s also completely energetically self-sufficient.
According to SolarImpact, ‘traditional ships are technologically exhausted’. That was all the motivation they needed to design a yacht with ‘fundamentally different technology’. The solar panels feed an 800kWh battery pack and two 65 kW range extenders which power along dual 500 kW engines. The result is a yacht which can hit speeds of up to 22 knots (around 25mph). Not only that, SolarImpact claim that travel will be ‘noiseless’.
As a result of its three-level design, the yacht offers over 3,600 square feet of living space, on a frame that’s just under 80 feet long and over 32 feet at its widest point. This means there is room for a cabin crew, but it might not be needed. The boat’s AI-powered autonomy systems allow the boat to be maneuvered by just one person.
The ship is supported by two torpedo-shaped buoyancy bodies beneath the water, which achieve a ‘physical wave decoupling’, reduces the rolling and heeling of the yacht by up to 90%. Essentially, the ship lies completely still in the water, even in strong waves.
It remains to seen whether all these claims come to life. But the SolarImpact Electric Yacht certainly looks and sounds the part. Keep an eye on the SolarImpact Website for updates.