Electric-Powered Silent 60 Catamaran Packs 42 Solar Panels and a Giant Kite Wing
Eco-friendly watercraft seem to be the hottest novelty, and Silent Yachts’ solar powered mobility alternatives are already becoming popular with boating enthusiasts. The Austria-based manufacturer recently presented its latest addition to its green catamaran fleet. Named the Silent 60, this watercraft offers solid solar power and an automatic towing kite. Recently launched in Thailand, this solar-electric catamaran is the next generation of the Silent 64, the brand’s first solar-powered yacht. While the exterior highlights a new hull shape with a long waterline and an inverted bow, its distinctive features such as the long window strips on the side wall of the hull and a wider window area have been retained.
It is an 18 meter long (59 ft) catamaran that consists of two 50 kW Electric motors in travel mode. For additional performance, you can switch between two further options: e-power and e-power +. The most powerful propulsion mode combines 340 kW motors with a 286 kW lithium battery bank and can go from a cruising speed of 6-8 knots to a top speed of 20 knots.
Equipped with 42 solar collectors, it is even more environmentally friendly than its older brother, as it can guarantee 17 kWp solar power regeneration. Perhaps the most outstanding feature is the kite wing, which, according to Silent, does not require a large mast as is the case with conventional yachts.
When not in use, the entire kite system can be stowed in a special compartment under the front deck. In addition, this fully automatic kite produces up to ten times as much power per square meter as a conventional sail. That’s enough juice for a transoceanic area.
In addition to the Kite-Sail system, the Silent 60 has an optional hydraulic platform with which the tender can be upgraded from 3.8 m to 4.2 m in length (12.46 by 13.77 ft). The yacht is equipped with a storage space under the bridge deck that can accommodate a tender or a small sailboat and several kayaks. In terms of interior layout, the yacht is flexible as it can be equipped with up to five cabins, including the main saloon and four guest cabins.
According to the Robb Report, this is the first unit of eight Silent 60 hulls currently under construction. To date, the company has already received 17 orders for the solar-powered catamaran.