Co-existing with the ocean and the seascape. Creating a new space where art, the human body and nature interact, opening up a possible future for the yachts of tomorrow. These are the aims of Aeolus, a concept by Oceanco. (Here all our posts about Oceanco)
Unveiled in Dubai
Presented at the Dubai International Boat show, the 131-metre gigayacht Aeolus is the culmination of the NXT project, an Oceanco initiative. Inspired by a round table held by the yard in 2020 to discuss the gap between developments in superyacht design and stagnation in the field of technical innovations, according to Oceanco CEO Marcel Onkenhout the NXT project
“Expresses our belief that the best way to establish new reference parameters is to co-create them alongside experts from a wide range of sectors, not just the yacht-building industry”. This has led to Aeolus, a yacht that is based on the idea that “The authentic sustainability of the future is beautiful and elegant, in terms of both technical capabilities and the materials used on board”.
Aeolus, born from a five stars team
Oceanco assembled a team of designers, engineers and technicians to breathe life into its proposal, and together they drew up the outline of a yacht in line with environmental development and changing lifestyles. Giles Taylor created an exterior design that expresses, in a seamless continuum, the transition between life on land and at sea, transcending the traditional yacht concepts and introducing references to the J class yachts of the early 20th century.
The aesthetic is summed up by the elongated foredeck, from which rise three glazed decks with long terraces projecting aft, an invitation to participate in the surrounding seascape. Njord, the Bergman Design House’s maritime arm, has developed interiors where large, versatile spaces are shaped to be open, welcoming and without limits. “Their organic nature, sensuality and playfulness played a significant role in the design”, says Sarah Colbon, co-founder of Njord.
As a result the spaces and interiors on board Aeolus, from the owner’s private areas to the upper deck master suite, the various saloons and the beach club with sea terrace, fully reflect Oceanco’s NXT vision – the use of exclusively sustainable materials from a carefully-selected roster of suppliers.
The floors on Aeolus feature alternative, responsible solutions featuring traditional exotic woods and Desserto vegan leather. The fabrics will be from the Tuscan brand Olivieri Home, which uses only cotton from companies with Global Organic Textile Standard certification, which means their growing and dyeing processes use only natural products.
All this is completed by the work carried out by Lateral Naval Architects with two partners from the Aeolus project – ABB, an electronics and automation company working towards more sustainable, efficient resource development and the Rolls Royce group’s MTU, with its marine engines. The result is the Energy Transition Platform, a development platform that will provide Aeolus with a no-carbon propulsion system.
“Every yacht built today must span the energy transition dictated by the changes in available fuels and the related technology”, says James Roy of Lateral. “That’s why we need a technical architecture that can adapt to the technologies that will reach maturity during the energy transition”.
Aeolus, different propulsion systems
Following this logic, the first phase of the Aeolus’s technical concept will involve the use of state-of-the-art diesel electric propulsion systems and the second will see the use of fuel cells with reduced CO2 emissions leading eventually to total energy autonomy using 100% alternative fuel and internal combustion cells.
This is the final piece in the Aeolus picture, a visionary concept for owners who are prepared to think outside the box. Marcel Onkenhout, CEO of Oceanco, sums up the project in these words:
“Aeolus is an example of how we see the yachting world develop from the point of view of design and technology. To build tomorrow’s yachts you have to shake off yesterday’s preconceptions. With Aeolus we think we’ve succeeded”.