THE NETHERLANDS, Oss. Following the success of 65m Galactica Star, the world’s first Fast Displacement Hull Form (FDHF), Heesen Yachts has unveiled the newest superyacht in its FDHF range. Project Nova is a full-aluminium 50m motoryacht that signals the arrival of a ‘new breed’ of Heesen yachts.

The patented FDHF was developed by Van Oosanen Navel Architects out of a desire to create a hull form that is efficient over a vessels full range of speeds, rather than only being efficient within restricted optimal speed intervals. The concept is based on a number features that have been present in the maritime industry for a good number of years.

Van Oosanens combination of a bilge hull form, a bulbous bow, and rigorous computational fluid dynamic testing and towing tank facilitation resulted in the creation of the FDHF. As well as being faster and more efficient through the displacement and semi-displacement speed ranges the FDHF also lead to improved sea keeping and manoeuvrability.

Tank testing

Whereas Galactica Star was revolutionary for the elevated speed provided by the FDHF, Project Nova will highlight the fuel saving capabilities of the van Oosanen hull. Her light aluminium hull, relatively small engines (2MTU x 600kW) and Heesen’s emphasis on weight control means Project Nova will not only be extremely efficient but also more spacious.

With a transatlantic range of 3,750 nautical miles at a cruising speed of 12 knots using 45m3 of fuel and a fuel consumption of 125 litres per hour – or 85 litres per hour at 10 knots – Project Nova is not only a cost saving vessel, but it is also an environmentally conscious design.

Her exterior lines, designed by Frank Laupman of Omega yachts, differ from the Heesen yachts of the past, but still maintain a focus on seaworthiness. The vertical bow for instance is not purely an aesthetic adaptation and serves to reduce the vertical acceleration often associated with on board discomfort. Sinot Yacht Design provided the interior design.

 Twelve guests will be accommodated in six cabins. Forward on the main deck is the master suite, featuring an ensuite with central bathtub. The remaining cabins are on the lower deck; forward is the full-beam VIP suite, two twin cabins are located amidship and two double cabins can be found aft.

Guests have direct access to the lower deck gymnasium through a door at the end of the hallway. The gymnasium also forms a sound buffer between the engine room and the guests by protecting against extraneous noise and vibration. From the gym guests are able to exist onto the aft deck and enjoy the ocean after a workout. The fixed swim platform offers space to relax close to the water and a pantry with wet bar compliments this outdoor area, a staircase leads to the main deck.


Project Nova’s keel was laid in the presence of the ABS surveyor last February at the Heesen facility in Oss and her construction is scheduled to be completed by spring 2017.

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