Rolls-Royce has just unveiled a ground-breaking luxury yacht concept which put’s both current super yachts and as well as fictional creations such as Octopussy to shame. The Crystal Blue opens up a whole new level of technology and luxury in the super-yacht market.
Introduced during the Global Superyacht Forum (GSF) in Amsterdam, the Crystal Blue yacht and its support vessel Blue Shadow have been developed to enable new thinking in yacht design and propulsion.
Oskar Levander, Rolls-Royce SVP Concepts and Innovation said: “Crystal Blue has been designed specifically to show how new technology can meet the yacht sector’s increased demand for higher performance, greater operating ranges and increased levels of guest comfort, without impacting the environment.”
One of the many novel features is the use of an intelligent dynamic positioning system which automatically controls twin azimuthing thrusters and a TT1100 bow thruster; technology that is usually found on offshore support vessels that must maintain their positions next to oil rigs to within a couple of metres. On board Crystal Blue, however, this system allows the yacht to remain in the right spot on the water, without using an anchor, and ‘follow the sun’ across the sky to ensure sunbathers can enjoy the “optimum tanning angle” while lounging on deck.
“”Our ship intelligence and remote-control concepts have allowed us to design a yacht for the future that has the bridge located below the bow, inside the vessel. The crew is able to monitor and control the vessel using sophisticated sensors, cameras, display screens and situational awareness technologies.”
“An internal bridge frees up the traditional area of the bridge in the forward part of the superstructure to let owners and guests enjoy a panoramic vista that is traditionally only enjoyed by the crew.”
The Rolls-Royce Blue Ocean team has also incorporated some novel safety features into the design, namely a ‘safe room’; a citadel in which guests and crew can seek refuge in the event of an unauthorised boarding. Once inside, the crew can override the controls and operate the yacht remotely or direct a shore-based centre to pilot the vessel.
Operating in convoy, Blue Shadow is a smaller 42 metre, remotely-controlled, steel-hulled support vessel used for transporting and launching the mother ship’s tender, helicopter and any other ‘toys’ that the yacht owner may have. It also allows designers to make better use of the aft area of Crystal Blue for guests, such as by including an infinity pool, or a beach area.
Explaining the reason behind the development, Levander added: “With Crystal Blue and Blue Shadow we can more effectively showcase how new digital-based ship intelligence solutions can offer unique possibilities, greater capability and added value to the luxury yacht market, both for new and existing vessels. The systems and technologies Rolls-Royce has available can bring ‘green’ values and previously unheard of levels of comfort to the yacht owner.”
“With Crystal Blue we can show what can be achieved and how the yacht of the future might look. We can give complete freedom to yacht designers and, in so doing, better fulfil the yacht owners’ dreams.”
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