Feadship has announced the launch of Savannah, an 83.5m hybrid, eco-friendly superyacht, which uses a blend of a single diesel engine, three gensets, batteries, propeller and an azimuth thruster.
The model comes as a result of the 2010 Feadship Future Concept Breathe, demonstrating a cleaner and more cost-effective mode of propulsion. With a dynamic and streamlined hull shape, Savannah uses one efficient medium-speed Wartsila main engine instead of two higher-rev diesel motors, a single central propeller shaft installation on the centreline and three gensets.
She has been designed to accommodate a 40-per-cent-larger-than-normal propeller and it is all these factors which contribute to cost and fuel savings, with the benefit of having five modes: manoeuvring, diesel-electric, range, high speed and boost. Combined with the power supplied by the thruster, the load on the propeller is only half that of a conventional twin screw yacht.
“It is not the individual technologies used on Savannah that are new in the yachting world – it is the way they have been combined,” said the owner’s project manager, Ted McCumber in a statement to the media.
McCumber adds that there is a choice of running on “diesel, diesel-electric or full electric. Moreover, Savannah is the first yacht in the world to be running with an azimpull and a variable pitch propeller.”
Henk de Vries, Feadship’s director said, “The way in which one gigantic propeller has been installed in front with another electrically powered prop in its slipstream has also never been applied on a yacht. A similar system has been used on board passenger ships in Japan, but that is an ‘industrial’ solution, without the attention to comfort required on a Feadship. To achieve this on a superyacht entailed an exceptional degree of cooperation with Wärtsilä and all the other equipment manufacturers.”
One of the other major innovations are the batteries, an idea that came from the owner. "These provide extra speed at the top end, allow proper loading of the generators at any speed and facilitate super-quiet cruising at slow speeds without any engines turning. We have installed Li-ion batteries with no less than one million Watts," de Vries explained.
Savannah’s exterior profile was created in partnership between CG Design and Feadship’s designers, using a ‘floating structure’ where the glass and composite panels appear to float due to complex visuals involving polished stainless steel strips and aluminium supports and teak. Savannah has also been entirely metallic painted, with the exception of the mast domes.
One of the main facilities on board is the underwater lounge at the port side, allowing guests to look at marine life on one side and then a nine metre swimming pool on the other. Also on board are four large guest suites and one VIP stateroom with a balcony and open aft deck areas, a specific request from the owner, who "loves to be at one with the owner," explained McCumber.
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