Oceanco’s 109m (357ft) superyacht proves that by turning conventional thinking on its head, a world of eco-conscious possibility opens up. What happens when a superyacht builder is brave enough to approach a high-stakes project by asking the fundamental questions that can truly shift the paradigm for how we approach luxury motor yacht design? The answer is the Oceanco Bravo Eugenia, a radical 109m (357ft) superyacht that boasts best-in-class hydrodynamic efficiency and an optimized hybrid propulsion system that uses the latest energy-saving technologies, resulting in truly eco-conscious credentials.
Even better for her owners, the superyacht’s efficiency from ecological advancements not only delivers technical and economic benefits but multiple lifestyle advantages, too – through the gaining of flexible lifestyle space for luxury accommodation and leisure areas. Oceanco Bravo Eugenia’s triumph is thanks to a revolutionary design methodology adopted by her masterminds, Dutch pedigree yacht builder Oceanco and renowned naval architects Lateral: LIFE, standing for Lengthened, Innovative layout, Fuel efficient and Eco-conscious.
The Meaning of Life – In fact, Bravo Eugenia was not the first time that Oceanco and Lateral had worked together; they had collaborated on her forerunner from the same Dutch shipyard several years previously, the 106.7m sailing yacht Black Pearl. She is celebrated as a visionary project in terms of her innovative green technology and optimized design, including a propulsion system that harvests kinetic energy under sail to be stored onboard and put to use as electrical power, meaning she can cross entire oceans without burning a litre of fossil fuel. The seeds of Bravo Eugenia’s success were sewn during Black Pearl’s conception and realization; in the creation of an environment which encourages pioneering thinking to challenge the familiar methodologies of naval architecture and yacht design. This gave birth to the LIFE design concept, which sought to transmute the ground-breaking accomplishments of Black Pearl into a Motoryacht framework.
Changing the Paradigm – When it comes to designing a large motor yacht, the length is usually the first thing to be decided, followed by the development of the interior design and exterior profile. Designers will strive to amplify space for the luxury living quarters and maximum speed is set, often based on historic builds. At this point, comments Oceanco’s CEO Marcel Onkenhout, a vicious circle begins: “This process tends to kick-start a ‘space race’ between designers and engineers. The engineer is focused on enabling design creativity and is therefore left with a very limited envelope to work within. The designer will push up space demands, which drives greater volume, which shifts up the weight, which leads to increased power needs, and so on and so forth.”An unfortunate consequence of this extra volume is that the resulting superyacht will require far more fuel to achieve the desired speed, at a cost to the owner’s bank balance as well as the environment.
A Virtuous Circle – The team knew that the seeds of innovation could never germinate while seeking to repeat past project successes on autopilot, and so they sought to ask completely new questions; the right questions. By turning the approach on its head, Oceanco and Lateral focused on one of the basic principles of hydrodynamics: maximizing the yacht’s waterline length reduces overall demand for propulsion power, and therefore the size of the engine and related equipment needed. And in adopting a refined version of the hybrid propulsion system used for Black Pearl, further power advantages were conveyed to Bravo Eugenia over a conventional diesel-only system. The result is an elegant and slender superyacht that minimizes allocation of technical space and amplifies guest living space, in a positive feedback loop with ever-increasing returns. “For Bravo Eugenia, we created a virtuous circle model: length and speed driving less power, less space and less weight – on repeat,” adds Lateral’s Managing Director, James Roy.
Results are clear –The benefits are manifold and the number speak for themselves. Where most large motor yachts require an expansive engine room sprawling across two levels, Oceanco’s LIFE approach puts Bravo Eugenia’s engine room on a single tier, conferring over 100 square meters of prime real estate to luxury lifestyle areas, such as cabins, on the highly-sought-after lower deck by the waterline. She features and impressive six guest suites on the same level as the yacht’s beach lounge, spa and gym.
30 per cent less fuel – The optimized Bravo Eugenia requires 30 per cent less fuel compared to a conventional Motoryacht of the same size, which is significantly better for the environment as well as a huge saving on operational costs to the owner. The fast superyacht is still able to achieve impressive speeds of up to 19 knots, and is more relaxing for passengers, thanks to reduced noise and vibration from the smaller propulsion-related equipment. When entering port the LIFE-enhanced yacht goes into ‘whisper mode’ for ultimate guest comfort. She also boasts a waste heat recovery system and an integrated battery system to allow for optimal operation at all times. All factors that have contributed to Bravo Eugenia’s widespread acclaim and taking home the Technology and Innovation Award at the 2019 La Belle Classe Explorer Awards from the Monaco Yacht Club.
But Oceanco is by no means resting on its laurels, concludes Onkenhout: “Black Pearl led to the creation of life design and to the innovation at the core of Bravo Eugenia”. Both are truly ground-breaking builds. Now we’re busy with what’s next: What new questions does Bravo Eugenia generate? And how will they take us into unchartered territory and the future of Superyacht?”
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by Elisa Corti