We are used to yacht concepts that go beyond reason, made to create a wow effect. Carapace by naval architect Elena Nappi surprises, but also tries to find some answers.
Carapace is a research project by Elena Nappi. It’s a ship that changes with the changing demands of customers and the changing environmental conditions. As today’s gigayachts owners already have it all, the point was to identify what they miss: the possibility to live new emotions in complete privacy. That’s why the concept investigates the submarine / luxury yacht relationship and studies its interrelations, and gets to a unique, hybrid product from both structural and formal points of view. It was born as a response to two important factors that have changed and continue to change the world landscape. The first is the socio-political changes and the obsession with the state of personal insecurity that is established especially among individual celebrities. The second concerns changes in the nautical sector over the last ten years and the search for ever larger boats.
A whole new (under)world
The world of luxury submarines is one of the last frontiers in the field of experimentation, and perhaps the hybrid will be the language of the future. Very often yacht owners are looking for original solutions to be able to offer their friends and their family something special, and certainly a diving cruise of this type is something unprecedented in the super yacht market.
Research in this direction has already been initiated by companies such as u-Boat Worx, Triton Submarines LLC, Seamagine Hydrospace Corporation and Ocean Technologies: it is no longer utopia, as there’s many ultra wealthy people who allow themselves this little toys, to set off and discover the underwater world. Maybe meet dolphins and whales in their natural space, visit shipwrecks, or tell themselves that they’ve met a sires.
The name Carapace comes from the exoskeleton of some animals: in the project it translates into an organic screen that shapes its superstructure. The concept’s dual nature is clear in the arrangement of the decks, consisting of three levels and an outer bridge, and in the strong focus on interior living spaces – designed also for passengers with limited mobility.
Structurally, the yacht consists of a light aluminum superstructure that shapes the open deck with its organic configuration. There is an external hull and an internal one, with the sturdy inner one to support the structure of the ship, and the hydrostatic pressures under immersion: for these reasons it assumes an almost spherical shape.
Let’s discover some more details of Carapace’s decks.
- On the third deck there’s tanks and all the service areas, the electric motor and the main heat engines, as well as the batteries and the hydrogen tanks
- The second deck hosts the cabins for the crew, the galley and the meeting room.
- On the upper deck there is the guests area, with spa, VIP cabins, and living area.
- The outer bridge features an open bar, a solarium, heliport and living area.
The peculiar size and shape of the body required particular care in the distribution of the spaces, the type of artificial lighting, the choice of materials and coatings, even the tactile and olfactory sensations that these materials can transmit.
In order to avoid the feeling of being inside a closed and limited body, Carapace uses domotics: it features a series of screens with OLED technology. Also because, there’s no portholes, due to the pressure that the submarine has to bear at 300 meters under the surface. Still, being a luxury vessel, Carapace is equipped with external cameras that bring inside the breath-taking images of the surrounding marine environment, thanks to the installation of OLED panels.
At the same time, these screens can project any type of desired image but above all, it will be possible to reconstruct the climatic environments of any area of the planet: think of the Caribbean ecosystem, including the temperatures and the smells of a Caribe beach.
Waiting to meet Carapace at some exclusive marina or under the sea, we can dream of it with our gallery of renderings.