Heesen’s Project Cosmos, packed with the power of 35 Ferraris, nears half completion


Heesen Yachts’s stellar new construction: the 80-metre Project Cosmos is due for delivery in April 2022.

The construction of Heesen Yachts’s biggest ever superyacht – the 80-metre all-aluminium Project Cosmos, which packs the horsepower of 35 Ferraris – is nearing half completion.

Currently under construction are the hull and the superstructure. The next phase will be joining the hull and superstructure together to bring the superyacht to its full 80 metres. This is 10 metres longer than Heesen’s previous biggest build, Mark Cavendish, its sales and marketing director, told a press meeting in London on Tuesday (December 3).

The project began 18 months ago with a request for an 80-metre vessel capable of 30 knots (34.5 miles per hour). “The owner’s representative had requested the biggest and fastest yacht in the world [with a conventional propeller propulsion system] and that certainly raised a few eyebrows in our shipbuilding department,” said Cavendish.

The solution was an all-aluminium design incorporating a novel, strengthened internal structure housing four engines capable of developing 20,000 horsepower.

Developing 20,000 horsepower

“Our engineering department came up with a design we have now patented called Backbone Technology,” explained Cavendish. “It is essentially replicating something simple: a steel I-beam or girder, which is used in construction all over the world.”

The I-beam design features two points on the deck of the yacht – port and starboard – and a point on the keel. “By strengthening those three points you get a lot of longitudinal strength in the boat, which you need [to achieve 30 knots].

The four MTU 20V diesel engines achieve a combined power of 20,000 horse power. “If you think about it, that represents immense power. Probably the equivalent power of about 35 Ferraris in the engine room, which is a great deal smaller than 35 Ferraris,” said Cavendish.

‘35 Ferraris in the engine room’

The 20,000 horse power is delivered to two gear boxes with the drive chain delivering power to the Promass sytem; which connects the propeller to the rudder to deliver an extra 2% to 3% efficiency, said Cavendish.

Project Cosmos is due to be delivered in April 2022.

Speaking at the same event, Heesen Yachts CEO Arthur Brouwer set out the company’s approach to yacht construction. It focuses on building fully-customised yachts and building speculatively to cater for buyers who want to take delivery within six months to a year.

Heesen currently has 13 superyachts under construction, with deliveries scheduled from next year to 2022. Eight projects are speculative. To fulfil its order book, in July the luxury yacht builder revealed its plan to expand its interior workshop at Winterswijk in central eastern Netherlands. The company has 450 in-house employees and a total workforce – including internal and external employees and subcontractors of 650.

Meanwhile, Heesen used the press event to launch the first of three limited-edition books  – Cosmos by Heesen, The Design Issue – designed to commemorate the construction of its biggest ever superyacht.

The engine room of Project Cosmos will produce 20,000 horsepower – the equivalent of 35 Ferraris like this 812 GTS, said Mark Cavendish.