November 2018 – SILENT-YACHTS, Austria-based producer of ultra-innovative oceangoing solar-powered catamarans, is making a big leap in size introducing its largest model to date. The spacious and stylish SILENT 79 is now under construction at a shipyard in Marotta, near the Italian shipbuilding capital Ancona. Three units are under construction, two have already been sold, and the first unit is to be launched in 2020.
Michael Köhler, SILENT-YACHTS Founder and CEO, has created the SILENT 79 concept, while Enrique Castilla of Insenaval is responsible for naval architecture. Marco Casali of Too Design was commissioned to design the exterior and interior of the new yacht. In terms of styling, the SILENT 79 is an evolution of the company’s vision. It carries the DNA of the smaller SILENT 55 model but on a much larger scale.
“I think, solar-electric boats are the future that is why I immediately agreed to work with Michael Köhler on his exciting venture,” said designer Marco Casali, who has a vast resume of successful superyacht projects with the likes of ISA Yachts, Columbus Yachts, Itama and Canados. “Solar power is about square meters, so we need to dedicate as much surface to the solar panels as possible, while keeping the overall balance in shape. In my opinion, we managed that with the SILENT 79. What I tried to achieve is an interesting Italian design, sophisticated and refined. This is a nice-looking yacht that meets efficiency.”
The SILENT 79 exterior is clean and timeless with straight lines of huge windows. They also allow abundance of natural light filling the saloon and guest spaces while providing panorama views throughout. Carrying solar panels, the flybridge adds sportiness to the look thanks to horizontal air grills inspired by supercars but with eco appeal. Both aft and forward outside spaces are spacious to host large, yet intimate, social areas. The cockpit in the aft has a lounge and a bar, while the front area is perfect for chilling under the sun, as it is equipped with a sea-facing sofa and sunpads.
The new yacht is built using vacuum-bagged resin infusion to create a lightweight glass-sandwich composite construction that has sound- and temperature-insulating qualities.
SOLAR POWER FOR UNLIMITED RANGE
Like the SILENT 55, the new SILENT 79 is an oceangoing solar-electric catamaran that uses silent electric propulsion for unlimited range without noise or fumes and minimal vibration, she is self-sufficient and virtually maintenance-free. The catamaran is fitted with a pair of electric engines (50 kW each in standard “Cruiser” version, 250 kW each in “E-Power” version) and common shafts. In the most powerful version, theSILENT 79 can reach up to 20 knots but this yacht’s mission is not focused on speed for sure. However, it offers total autonomy with no fuel, fumes, exhausts or noise.
The system works quite simple and virtually without any maintenance needed. The catamaran is capable of going at 6-7 knots in complete silence and with unlimited range passing around 100 nautical miles per day.
With 70 high-efficiency solar panels rated for approximately 25 kilowatt-peak, the SILENT 79 uses maximum power point tracking (MPPT) solar charge regulators and the same lithium batteries as used by Tesla, which provide capacity for all-night cruising, while a 15-kVA inverter provides power for all household appliances.
The energy production and propulsion systems require hardly any maintenance and produce no fumes or noise. Because of that, the operational costs of the vessels are substantially lower compared to power yachts using traditional propulsion systems.
The SILENT 79 has a generator too but this is only used to recharge the batteries in the rare case when higher speed is required for longer periods of time or if the weather is bad for several days.
In addition, a “Hybrid Power” version of the SILENT 79 has a pair of 220 HP motors combined with two 14 kW diesel engines.
The SILENT 79 is available in several different layouts. You can find a huge saloon on the main deck, benefitting from enormous 10.95 m width, with a galley inside, a lounge and a dining area. The lower deck is fitted with 4-6 guest cabins and two crew cabins. All staterooms offer double or twin berths, and all heads include a separate shower. Other layouts are available on request.
“For example, the first unit, which is under construction now, has a balanced 4-cabin layout with two real owner cabins”, explains Marco Casali. “The aft master suite has a huge room, a study, a walk around closet and even a sauna.”
As there is no actual engine room because the yacht is solar-powered, the SILENT 79 has the largest garage in the category. “There is enough space for a 4.5-meter long tender, an amphibious car and a gyrocopter on floats, which is quite impressive for a yacht under 24 m long”, comments Michael Köhler.
SUPERYACHT LEVEL INSIDE
The interior of the SILENT 79 is completely customizable on the level of superyachts. Since the SILENT- YACHTS’ heritage is about being green and eco-friendly, the yacht is principally decorated with lightweight and recyclable materials that respect the environment.
“Inside the SILENT 79 is designed to provide maximum comfort to owner and guests who spend months on board in long happy voyages”, said Michael Köhler. “The décor styling is marine, so it is minimalist, ergonomic, muted, and at the same time luxurious and refined to perfection.”
The base price of the SILENT 79 is 3.4 million Euro, many options are included as standard, which usually require extra payment.