Zero Emission Cruising Yacht

zero emission yacht

Two of the more innovative of eco friendly yacht builders are to partner each other in a bid to build a zero-emission catamaran cruising yacht

The Solar-electric yacht with innovative kite drive heralds a new generation of yachting and comes from

Silent-Yachts, a manufacturer of solar-hybrid yachts, and SkySails Yacht specialists in the field of towing kite systems.

Silent-Yachts’ new Silent 75 series will be adapted carry the SkySails Yacht kite system to offer noiseless cruising and an unlimited range without any emissions at all.

“We have been asked so many times, why we are not using the wind as well as solar energy to drive our yachts. But the fact is conventional sails are inefficient, require a lot of maintenance but worst of all they create a shadow and that cuts back on the efficiency of the solar panels we fit to our yachts,” explains Michael Köhler, founder and CEO of Silent-Yachts.

Since the SkySails kite flies in altitudes of between 100 and 150m where the winds are much stronger, much less space is needed on deck and there is no shadow on the panels to reducing the yachts solar power generation.

Add to that, the kite, using dynamic flight manoeuvres, generates up to 25 times more power per square metre than a conventional sail .

This towing kite forms the core of the SkySails Yacht propulsion.

It works in a similar fashion to that of a paraglider the kite is steered by a control pod located underneath it.

An integrated Autopilot ensures that the towing kite flies defined patterns. Starting and Landing of the kite is performed using special gears installed on or under the deck of the yacht.

The system overalls is far lighter than a traditional rig, needs less attention and can be launched and recovered within a few minutes, automatically or manually.

Each yacht carries a second propulsion system as a backup. In addition to that, while being powered by the kite, the yacht’s batteries are recharged using solar and trailing propeller generators. This creates a lighter and safer yacht at higher speeds than any comparable sailing boat.

There is already proof that this concepts works: the SkySails Yacht kite drive has been powering the solar hybrid catamaran Race for Water since April of this year and has demonstrated its reliability. Under ideal conditions the kite measuring only 40m² accelerates the 34m 100 tons yacht to a speed of up to 8 knots using only the power of wind. On top of that, the captain and the crew are very happy with the easy handling of the automated system.

Sven Klingenberg, co-founder and managing director of SkySails Yacht adds: “A solar-electric yacht and a kite drive are the perfect match – with these two energy systems combined, the yacht has truly unlimited range.