Feadship celebrated the tenth anniversary of the Feadship Future Concept with its latest Future Concept 2016 FFC Choice, unveiled at the Monaco Yacht Show through a yacht model and augmented reality.
The 74-metre Choice offers various autonomous ways of living on and off board, including two co-propulsion tenders, a detachable beach house, a drone and a motion-compensated pool. Independence is stimulated by the revolutionary Feadship Independent Control System (FICS).
Regularly released since 2006 to inspire the industry and the next-generation owners, the Feadship Future Concepts are based on client feedback, brainstorming sessions and research studies. During the last ten years, they have foreseen a growing interest in glass construction (X-stream), hybrid propulsion (F-stream), low fuel consumption (Breathe), eco-friendly design (Aeon), facilities for younger owners (Qi), the desire for privacy (Relativity) and the art of entertainment (Royale).
The 2016 Feadship Future Concept takes all these areas into account – and goes even further.
“The essence of our thinking on Choice is recognition that the ability to transform a yacht while underway is becoming ever-more important to owners,” explains Ruud Bakker, senior designer at Feadship. “As well as the wealth of choices Feadship clients have before and during the building process, our aim with this new concept is to give even more options once they are on board. The 74.5-metre Choice facilitates autonomous exploration in new and refreshing ways.”
Choice’s primary propulsion sources are located in the 24.50-metre tenders either side of the yacht. Thanks to their faster speed and reduced draught, the choice to use tenders increases flexibility of operation. On the other hand, the mothership has its own electric propulsion package, charged by the tenders while docked. This arrangement allows for the type of slow steaming operation adopted by large cargo vessels.
“Taken together, these elements allow Choice to enhance and multiply the number of experiences for those on board while consuming less fuel,” explains Bakker. “Compared to an 80-metre Feadship, Choice would offer 29% savings on fuel while providing 17% more time for owners and guests to enjoy their time at anchor.”
Further advantages of the tenders
“These mini-Feadships can cross a distance in the same time as a fast Feadship but access places which large vessels cannot reach,” says senior designer Tanno Weeda. “Freedom Won and Freedom Too both have a top speed of 25 knots and are stable enough for rough seas. They also offer exceptional comfort, including two double suites, a single cabin and a lounge.”
When docking, Choice and the tenders are on the same wavelength, manoeuvring into the ideal position for a comfortable connection. Once in place, the tenders serve as a supplementary boarding area and swimming platform. They also increase the beam of the boat by 6.50 metres, offering wide side decks.
Other ways to leave the mothership include a two-passengers drone located at the top of the yacht and an amphibious beach house apartment. The aft end of the mothership can transform into a private beach. When the tenders are launched, the sides of the beach club offer safe water access for swimming or other water sports.
Motion-compensated pool through magnetic levitation
A motion-compensated pool not moving with the yacht is another innovative feature.
“While every Feadship already benefits from the latest thinking in motion control, even the smallest disturbances can trigger waves in a pool,” explains Weeda. “Uncoupling the pool using a magnetic levitation and drive system stops these waves being generated and maximises availability of the pool. The system lifts the pool in a way that ensures there is no friction, decelerates the relative motions and manages the list and relative drift between yacht and pool.”
Moreover, the aft end has been designed with louvres which can be closed to protect against the elements. An additional layer is added to the louvres so that the shape can be controlled manually or autonomously via an electric current.
Feadship Independent Control System
The Feadship Independent Control System is an autonomous control system designed to relieve crew and let yachts run on their own. The FICS uses sensor technology and real-time online data such as wave radar, weather forecasts and traffic information to gather information on the surrounding conditions. Intelligent control processes deploy this data to determine how the yacht should respond, for instance in defining the most suitable route, optimising comfort at anchor, finding the best location to detach the tenders, notifying when it is safe to take off with the drone.
“We haven’t quite reached the autopilot stage yet, but the way this solution communicates with the environment is optimised to the highest degree,” concludes Bakker. “FICS supports captains and frees up their time for other things that make the guests’ stay on a Feadship even more pleasant. It has also allowed us to dispense with the conventional wheelhouse: as an autonomous yacht, Choice only requires a bridge lounge with some minor technical buttons for steering. As is often the case with a Feadship Future Concept, one good thing frequently leads to another.”