Meccano Engineering obtains the AiP certificate for the Orca 65 yacht

The Classification society RINA has awarded the Approval in Principle Certificate to Meccano Engineering for its 65-metre explorer yacht project, Orca 65, with a Dual-Fuel engine DieselMethanol propulsion system, presented during the latest Monaco Yacht Show.

Specialized in Naval Architecture, Engineering and Consulting services in the marine, shipbuilding and energy sectors, Meccano Engineering is a certified company operating since late 90s and working with top leading shipyards, ship owners and EPC contractors.

“Within our company programme aimed to develop advanced green solutions and projects with low environmental impact,” – says Stefano Reggente, President and Managing Director at Meccano Engineering – “we have produced this innovative concept, based on our extensive experience in yacht design, combined with the know-how gained with researches and concepts on methanol ready ships developed in recent years.”

Responsible for the exterior design, naval architecture and engineering of Orca 65, Meccano Engineering and its experienced team of talented professionals have taken inspiration from nature to design this ice-classed explorer yacht. Her organic design traits in fact recall the shape of the majestic marine mammal. “For this unique and nature-inspired concept, it came naturally for us to develop an alternative eco-friendly propulsion system” – explains Reggente – “After extensive research on fuel alternatives, we have focused on e-methanol, considering it as one of the most promising and feasible alternatives with a clear potential pathway towards a future carbon-neutral supply.”

Methanol ticks a lot of the right boxes for vessel owners and shipyards:

– it is liquid at atmospheric pressure and can be easily transported, stored and handled
– although it is toxic and highly flammable, it dissolves in water and biodegrades quickly
– it dramatically reduces NOx emissions into the atmosphere by 60% and has no SOx emissions
– it has the potential of being CO2 emission neutral if produced sustainably, either from renewable electricity or biomass.

“We have conceived this hybrid and dual-fuel methanol concept modifying our proprietary project Orca, developed in 2019 with a traditional propulsion” -says Sebastiano Battagli, Technical Manager at Meccano Engineering.

The main targets of the new concept, in comparison with the original project, were several, such as the same guest area surface and interior volume, a limited reduction of the tender&toys garage, an irrelevant change of the diesel and freshwater capacity, a similar range, with at least a 30% of it done on methanol.

The choice of the engine was also key to achieve the objectives and came after an important process of research, analysis and review. “All major engines suppliers on the market are currently working towards methanol ready or methanol fuelled models.” – tells Battagli – “For a yacht of this size, we have chosen a MAN 175D methanol ready engine, which will be available in 2026.”

RINA was fundamental throughout the process and has mainly supported the Triesteheadquartered company during the concept development with clarifications on applicable Rules and Regulations for methanol on yachts.

“We thank RINA and its team not only for this important recognition but also for their active support and collaboration” – concludes President Reggente – “We hope the awarding of the Approval in Principle will be just the beginning for us, with the aim of developing the project starting from the concept and taking on-board Rina’s valuable comments.”

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