EDIT – On the morning of Monday, February 10, the Sinot design studio, author of the “Aqua” concept, denied with a note on its website that it had received an offer from the tycoon Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft.
Aqua is Bill Gates’ new superyacht. A hydrogen project that had caused quite a stir on its debut. Its value, 500 million pounds (644 million dollars) had narrowed the list of potential buyers. Now, according to Sunday Telegraph, the billionaire founder of Microsoft, Bill Gates, has just commissioned one.
Although not among of the 10 largest superyachts in the world, the 112-metre yacht with its futuristic design and even more forward propulsion will certainly be one of the most expensive. The entire yacht is vigorously supported by fuel cells powered by liquid hydrogen. A system that after having received a great deal of attention in the first decade of the 2000s seemed to have been set aside. But with the Aqua it is back in vogue. This “green” giant was advertised last year at the Monaco boat show by the Dutch design studio Sinot. INFO ABOUT AQUA, THE HYDROGEN SUPERYACHT
It is unlikely that we will see the new Bill Gates’ superyacht into the sea before 2024. When it does, it will have the potential to reach speeds of 17 knots (about 20 miles per hour) and travel 3,750 miles (more than the distance as the crow flies between Milan and New York) before refueling. It will use PEM (Proton Excange Membrane) fuel cells as an energy source to drive an axle with two counter-rotating propellers and two Voith Scheider twin thrusters, already widely used on tugboats and ferries for the good maneuverability they provide.
As a 112-metre superyacht, there will also be a spare diesel on board. Why? Practical reasons: there are not so many hydrogen filling stations in the world today.
Bill Gates, 64 years old, currently ranks as the second richest man in the world with an estimated fortune of 118 billion dollars.