Rolls-Royce unveils LNG/battery-powered luxury yacht concept

Rolls-Royce unveiled a luxury yacht concept featuring hybrid propulsion combining liquefied natural gas (LNG) and battery power. 

Designed for 12+ passengers and 12 crew, the 62 meter Crystal Blue is based on a composite or aluminium hull operating a power plant based on the Rolls-Royce hybrid LNG/Battery SAVe-CUBE system configuration, the company said in a statement.

The machinery consists of twin LNG-fuelled generator sets working in parallel with a battery bank to provide 1MWh of genset-free power during port stays.

Although LNG fuel is increasingly specified for commercial vessels, particularly coastal ferries, the size of the fuel tanks and a lack of LNG bunkering infrastructure has been a major barrier to the yacht sector embracing the cleaner, odourless fuel.

The Crystal Blue concept would be accompanied by a support vessel Blue Shadow, that would serve as a personal LNG bunkering barge.

Speaking of the concept, Henrik Alpo Sjöblom, project manager in the Rolls-Royce Blue Ocean team said the Crystal Blue fuel tanks have been dimensioned for a range of 3000 nautical miles without refueling.

“But with the Shadow’s additional fuel capacity, the range increases to 4400 nautical miles, meaning that most of the typical yachting areas are accessible,” Sjöblom said.