Solar-Electric Yacht specialists Azura recently launched the Aquanima 40 “Solar Eclipse”. The company states it has exceeded performance expectations for both maximum speed and energy consumption at cruise speed.
Courtesy of Azura
During a four-hour long sea trial off the coast of Bali, Indonesia, Solar Eclipse achieved a maximum speed over 8.5 knots against her theoretical hull design speed. Most importantly, the yacht was able to cruise continuously at a speed above 4.5 knots using less than 2 kilowatts (kW) of energy per hour whilst simultaneously producing over 8 kW of energy from her solar panels. This means that the yacht returned to her mooring with 100% battery charge and with huge capacity to spare even after conducting several high speed tests while navigation and domestic systems were used throughout the sea trials. Azura Marine CEO Julien Mélot commented, “During these exceptionally difficult times with most of the world still under some form of lockdown, we are very grateful to the Balinese maritime authorities for allowing us a few hours at sea to put Solar Eclipse to the test. Admittedly, even I was surprised that we were able to immediately achieve cruise speed with such minimal power consumption giving us the clear confirmation that this is a true go-anywhere boat relying purely on the energy of the sun.” The Aquanima 40 “Solar Eclipse” has a 10 kWp solar roof for 10 tons of displacement, offering presently and by far the best ratio solar power/displacement on the blue water solar yacht market. She carries a 60 kWh battery bank which is easily kept topped up to 100% during the day by her solar roof. This means the yacht has unlimited continuous range, 24/7, day and night, purely from her solar-electric systems with no need for shore plug in or fossil fuels. This gives the yacht total autonomy (supported by her rainwater collecting solar roof, onboard water-maker and a few more bespoke unique energy-saving systems) to enable absolute freedom in the remotest corners of the planet. This is achieved without producing any harmful emissions, pollution, vibration or smells and giving near silent operation for the owners. Commercial Director Simon Turner said, “We have had an unprecedented amount of interest in the boat from all over the world in the short time since Solar Eclipse was launched. We now have the data to show customers that the boat is truly autonomous and it is absolutely clear that our customers are wanting something different and to ditch fossil fuels completely. These people are not interested in thrashing around at 30 knots but more in having a joyous, silent, cruising experience safe in the knowledge that they are not harming our oceans and marine life, let alone not incurring a single cent of fuel cost.”