22 Feb 2012
Holland Jachtbouw launches J-Class 'Rainbow'
Holland Jachtbouw has launched the 40m J-Class vessel, Rainbow from its Dutch base. The yacht is modelled on the eponymous winner of the1934 edition of the America’s Cup but comes with a high-end interior and a state-of-the-art hybrid propulsion system. She will now undergo sea trials in preparation for the busy summer schedule of sailing regattas.
The launch itself posed the challenge of negotiating Rainbow’s 5m draft into the water, via the deployment of two cranes. “It is such a thrill to be able to fully appreciate a design that was last seen in the open almost 80 years ago,” said the yard’s co-director Tako van Ineveld. “This ‘new’ Rainbow took us over two years to build while her predecessor was completed in just one hundred days. This does not mean we are slower… It is a reflection of the incredible degree of sophistication that is now contained within these timeless lines. The original Rainbow was an empty boat with a deck of sailing gear and a powerful aluminium rig. This Rainbow is a different proposition altogether.”
The naval architecture for this project was undertaken by Dykstra & Partners, and was based on core rigidity and lightweight construction. The rig includes a Southern Spars high-modulus carbon mast, boom and spinnaker pole, continuous carbon fibre rigging, North Sails 3Di racing sails and Lewmar high-speed hydraulic winches. All are entirely customised to Rainbow’s specific requirements and, like everything metallic on deck, anodised to create a light grey look.
As governed by JCA rules, the yacht required a fully functioning interior, and according to the yard, the owner has spared no expense in fulfilling this obligation. The original Rainbow did not have an engine room so there was a limited amount of space to accommodate one within the lines plan. Holland Jachtbouw’s solution, developed in partnership with WhisperPower, has been to create a hybrid propulsion and power system especially for this project.
As a result, Rainbow can be operated entirely on her Hy-Store Li-ion batteries, including sailing, navigation and hotel load. This also meets the owner’s request for silent periods onboard, without generators running between 11 pm and 7 am. And that in turn offers potential for the charter of Rainbow.
This hybrid solution replaces the conventional main engine and two generator configuration found on other Js, which have a larger engine room than the comparatively lighter Rainbow (170 tonnes). The main engine replaces the second generator, while the remaining generator is a variable-speed electric unit. The main engine generator can also act as an electric motor that can run the propeller. This solution is smaller in size and saves on fuel. The batteries can also be charged while sailing without losing more than 1.5 knots of speed.
Other key overall benefits of this innovative propulsion solution include a reduction of the vessel's ecological footprint, a 30 per cent reduction in the fuel required to generate the hotel load, and a similar reduction in the maintenance costs for the power plant in hotel load. Redundancy is built-in with five power sources available: The hybrid battery, the variable speed generator, the variable speed engine generator, the shaft generator (when sailing) and shore power (when available). There is also a substantial reduction in audible noise levels both inside the yacht and out.
In terms of styling, Rainbow’s interior features raised and fielded mahogany panelling with art deco details. The owner’s stateroom is aft and there are two ensuite twin guest cabins, each with a Pullman berth. In addition to offering accommodation to up to eight guests, Rainbow will have a permanent crew of seven led by Captain Nick Haley who has previously skippered two other members of the Holland Jachtbouw fleet, namely Windrose of Amsterdam and Athos.
This April a team of race professionals will join the permanent crew for the first time to embark on seven days of extensive training in the North Sea.
During the J-class regattas in Falmouth and Cowes, Rainbow will be accompanied by a support vessel to accommodate the larger crew at night.
Rainbow also has a full schedule of engagements to compete in the other major regattas of 2012. And she will be appearing at the Monaco Yacht Show where Rainbow will be on display close to the Holland Jachtbouw stand.
Holland Jachtbouw Profile | Holland Jachtbouw Website
Dysktra & Partners Profile | Dykstra & Partners Website
WhisperPower Profile | WhisperPower Website
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