At 100 nautical miles, this battery-powered hydrofoil boat offers world's longest range

The purpose-built 35ft electric flying boat also offers a top speed of 22 knots.
Jijo Malayil


How do you make an electric boat go faster and further on a single charge? Either you fit a more powerful battery that usually increases the weight, making it counterproductive, or use a hydrofoil system to reduce drag. 

SpiritBARTech35EF has found an ideal solution to this by utilizing both to derive the longest range for an electric yacht at 100 nautical miles (115 miles/185 km) and a top speed of 22 knots (25 mph/41 km/h) once it is flying. The purpose-built 35ft electric flying boat also features a trio of active retractable foils to help minimize drag.

The SpiritBARTech35EF is a product of UK-based boat design experts Spirit Yachts’ collaboration with marine engineering company BAR Technologies. Previous iterations of electric yachts of around 40ft had displayed an average range between 25 to 70 nautical miles. 

"The electric flyer will be the first of a series of boats we design to break new ground as we move into a greener generation of leisure yachts," said John Cooper, CEO of BAR Technologies, said in a media statement

A bespoke electric motor

A customized, totally electric advanced powertrain for the project was supplied by UK-based electric motor specialists Equipmake. The project is the first time Equipmake’s "electrification products and expertise have been applied to the rapidly growing electric marine market, which is estimated to be worth $16.6 billion by 2030."

Based on its lightweight, power-dense, high-performance HPM-400 model, the new iteration offers a peak output of 80kW (107) hp and also features an integrated gearbox, which was crafted exclusively for the project. 

SpiritBARTech35EF also features the UK-based firm's 120kWh bespoke battery pack and its own HPI-450 IGBT inverter to support the powertrain to achieve record-breaking numbers. 

Combined with its advanced electric propulsion system, the yacht also features an innovative design that is a mix of titanium and cold-molded wood with a carbon fiber reinforced shell, enabling it to reduce the weight of the structure to just a tonne. 

Hydrofoil technology helps in increasing efficiency

As the industry gains from the ground-breaking advancements in foiling technology made possible by the America's Cup, the power consumption of modern boats is decreasing dramatically.

In the case of this new design, Spirit Yachts and BAR Technologies worked together to adopt the latter's foiling technology, which reduces friction between the hull and the water and results in a boat that is both comfortable and effective to use. The boat emerges silently from the water and flies above the surface at a peak speed of 30 mph (48 kph) as a result.

There is little doubt that the future of this sector will be defined by developments in the sustainability and efficiency of vessels, and SpiritBARTech35EF is an example of how things are moving in the right direction.

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