While the rise in alternative fuel sources largely began in the auto sector, hybrid, hydrogen fuel cells, and electric powertrains have increasingly been finding their way into the yachting industry. And while a great many yacht builders are embracing these emerging to lessen fuel reliance and consumption, a recent joint effort between the Netherlands’ Dykstra Naval Architects and Istanbul’s Red Yacht Design saw these cutting edge naval firms revert to a using one of the earliest forms of power for marine travel to solve this problem: wind.
Christened the “ICE Kite,” the collaborative project is comprised of a sleek, 211’ super-yacht that’s powered via traditional internal combustion marine engines. Aside from its striking appearance, what sets this ship aside is its use of a 1,700 square-foot kite harnessing wind some 600’ over the boat and affording the ICE Kite substantially better fuel economy over non-kite-supplemented vessels. The engines’ efficiency is further helped along by an ultra-hydrodynamic and lightweight aluminum hull design, and the kite’s geometry having been fine-tuned. Built around carbon fiber super-chassis, the super-yacht boasts an interior with a glass-ceilinged lounge, a spa, four generously-sized guest rooms, and a full five-star master’s suite, plus 5,000 square feet of outside deck-space.