This hydrogen-powered mini-yacht concept “flies” like a regatta boat

The Jet borrows an idea from competition boats, but puts it at the service of comfort and energy savings.

The Jet ZeroEmission, a Swiss startup, has partnered with Zenith Marine and DWYN to offer its eponymous boat, a luxurious, innovative and eco-responsible mini-yacht concept.

In its press release spotted by Interesting Engineering, the firm presents a boat with a futuristic look that would fit perfectly on the set of a science fiction film. This visual impact comes partly from the shape of the cabin, but above all from the three foils which support the assembly instead of the hull.

For those who are not familiar with these funny appendages, the image is surprising. Yet it is a technology well known to browsers. These fins have gradually imposed themselves in the world of competition; so much so that today the machines equipped with them dominate regattas such as the Vendée Globe without any possible dispute.

Three fins to rule them all

The concept is simple: in essence, these fins work just like the wings of an airplane. When the speed increases, they generate a pressure differential on each side of the surface; as this differential increases, so does lift. When they exceed a certain threshold, the speed and therefore the lift become sufficient to lift the hull of the machine up to about one meter above the water. It can thus navigate with much less resistance and, therefore, faster. According to its designers, this yacht could flirt with 75 km/h while enjoying exceptional stability.

For sailors, the foil has become synonymous with speed, fluidity and performance. The Jet takes the problem from the other end: instead of increasing the maximum speed of the machine, its designers preferred to put the foils at the service of energy efficiency and ergonomics.

Unlike a regatta trimaran, this machine will not be propelled by the wind. But at least the source of energy used is also renewable; instead, it can rely on two hydrogen fuel cells. They power two electric motors mounted directly at the end of the foils; they are the ones that will make it possible to reach cruising speed so that the machine can put on its stilts. Once thus perched, it could glide on the water while consuming very little fuel, without the slightest emission of greenhouse gases, and in almost total silence.

The Jet itself is a very high-end craft, designed primarily for a wealthy elite; the initiative is also financed by the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation. But the firm also plans a second model, the Liner; less efficient and less elegant, it could however play the role of a shuttle for 26 to 32 passengers. Eventually, the general public could therefore also taste these boats of the future.

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