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Monday, October 9, 2017

Will luxury yachting go green?

By Beverly Pereira
Photography: Courtesy Tjep
Read Time: 2 mins 
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Driven by electric propulsion and a radical aesthetic, the EAU concept electric luxury yacht by Tjep, reimagines a cleaner future for the luxury yacht industry…

The impact of leisure boating on marine environments is a well-documented problem. Even as regulations seek to alleviate the issue, engine emissions and the incorrect disposal of waste by yachts contribute to marine pollution. Dutch designer Frank Tjepkema proposes to veto this with the introduction of the EAU concept electric luxury yacht.
 
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Considering the growing projection of the automobile industry towards electrically-operated vehicles, Frank anticipates the same influence in the yacht building industry. He prophesies that although the pace of progress is extremely low, developments in areas such as electric cargos, hydrogen trucks and electric cars (TESLA) will find their way to the luxury yacht industry ultimately, by increasing the availability of large volume on-board electricity storage and charging points in ports. In such a scenario, questions Frank, “Would it not be nice if the leisure category, where there’s an abundance of capital, would lead the way? Why should enjoyment be combined with heavy pollution?”  
 
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Taking a step in the desired direction, Frank has conceptualised EAU to precision – at a length of 63 m, width of 13.5 m and beam of 18 m. Designed to have 100% electric propulsion with a speed of 25 knots, the yacht will host 12 cabins, a swimming pool and a helipad, its hull and superstructure crafted from aluminium. The future for a green yacht industry looks bright since Tjep. has been shortlisted for Yacht Concept over 40 Metres Award in The International Yacht & Aviation Awards 2018.
 
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But, the EAU yacht isn’t just at the technological frontier of this industry; it also floats aesthetic qualities that represent the ultimate in cleanliness. Pushing simplicity and refinement to its limit, the design is inspired by the qualities of water. The design’s most striking element is a water droplet-shaped wheelhouse that floats like an abstract sculpture above the deck. The yacht also uses familiar elements from traditional yacht craftsmanship, such as the way in which wooden planks form the layered lines along the hull of wooden ships.


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