While support vessels represent a burgeoning segment of the superyacht world, they’re seldom stylish. These no-frills workhorses tend to favor function over form, but Echo Yachts has just flipped the script with a remarkable new design known as the Project Echo Humanitarian Support Vessel.
The Australian yard partnered with the London-based studio Bannenberg & Rowell and Incat Crowther Naval Architects to create the 164-foot catamaran, which is geared toward “philanthropic clients looking to support humanitarian missions in challenging, remote and shallow-water locations.”
Building on the Project Echo Adventure Support Yacht (ASY), which was unveiled in 2017, the multihull pairs a functional layout for moving tons of medical equipment with a handsome exterior for which the yard is known. The goal of the HSV is to be as seaworthy and medically relevant as any shadow vessel can be, without compromising on its performance and ability to re-adapt to the mothership.
Project Echo HSV can be customized to any owner’s requirements. The interior may be fitted with medical rooms, laboratories, medical supply storage spaces, as well as isolated treatment rooms on the exterior, which feature a specially configured HVAC system to provide 100 percent fresh air and minimize the risk of contamination.
The exterior also sports an expansive aft deck that comes complete with an integrated cargo-deck, rail-fastening system. The deck can accommodate large tenders, medical supplies and a helicopter to support medevac or guest transfers. On top of that, a heavy-duty, 12-tonne, knuckle-boom crane can be used to move cargo containers, making the delivery of crucial medical supplies or even drinking water, much easier.
Performance-wise, the vessel delivers exceptional fuel efficiency and has a 4,000-mile range. She is built to weather tough oceanic conditions, so no destination is off limits.
“The catamaran platform offers stability, fuel-efficient range and space—providing an ideal mothership for adventure and humanitarian operations whenever the need might arise,” Dickie Bannenberg, managing director at Bannenberg & Rowell, said in a press release.
Given current circumstances, the cat could prove particularly useful in disseminating Covid-19 vaccines to remote locations when that day arrives.
Check out more photos of the catamaran below: