3D-Printed Sailboat Powered by Solar Energy
The Kira Yacht features solar cells in the sail for a zero carbon footprint
Industrial designer Sebastian Campos Moller has designed a sailboat with integrated solar cells in the horizontal ribs of its sail, allowing the boat to collect solar energy to power its electric engine and other components.
Moller’s Kira Hybrid Sail-Yacht is designed to “bridge the gap between sailing and motor yachting.” The designer adapted the lead in the keel of the boat into batteries that are powered by the solar cells in the sail.
The solar-powered vessel has a simple and minimalist style and was designed to perform as well as any other performance yachts and sailboats and yet be comfortable and easy enough to be managed by those who are not experienced sailors. According to Moller, the 40-meter vessel was designed to be controlled via computer and sailed by a crew of just one person.
On his website, Moller writes, “My goal was to achieve the perfect blend of features and comfort, while staying true to sailing and making it an experience available for non-sailors that was true and honest.”
The designer did his research and even had the hull revised by a Naval architect in Sweden. The decks of the boat were redefined to create more space. The features of the hybrid sail-yacht is a Genoa sail furled into the second deck to create more space for amenities, including a hammock, at the bow or forward part of the boat. The gunnel walls retract into the deck to let people easily board the boat. The flying bridge or the operating station holds the computer-controlled winches and navigation instruments that allow the vessel to be manned by a single person. A swim platform is installed at the stern to let passengers go for a swim when they want to. It also serves as another way for them to board the vessel.
The designer made a physical model, which was a 3D print and produced in multiple parts that were assembled by the designer to create the hybrid water vehicle.
The Kira Hybrid Sail-Yacht won the bronze at the 2014 International Design Excellence Awards