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Sanlorenzo signs partnership with Rolls-Royce to develop methanol propulsion system

12 September 2022 •by Katia Damborsky

Sanlorenzo has announced an exclusive partnership with Rolls-Royce that will see the pair work together to develop and build the first methanol-powered propulsion system seen on a superyacht.

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The partnership was announced at the Cannes Yachting Festival and is part of the Italian shipyard's sustainability and technology commitments named Road to 2030. The system will be fitted on a prototype vessel due for delivery in 2026 and will harness hydrogen power obtained from methanol with the assistance of two MTU methanol engines based on the Series 4000.

Massimo Perotti, CEO of Sanlorenzo, said: “The introduction of innovations and technologies to reduce the environmental impact of yachts has long been the focus of the Group's research and development department. The subscription of the agreement with Rolls-Royce and its brand MTU for the integration of methanol propulsion systems on our superyachts represents a memorable moment, because it gives an extraordinary acceleration to our responsible path and widens our horizons.

"Thanks to the marine use of methanol as a fuel for combustion engines, which allows carbon-neutral powerful propulsion,  Sanlorenzo will be able to give the true answer to the demand for sustainability in the yachting sector."

The technology will be delivered by Rolls-Royce’s business unit Power Systems under its MTU brand and combined with fuel cell technology supplied by Siemens Energy. 

The news was announced during a press conference in which Sanlorenzo CEO Massimo Perotti also spoke more about a Sanlorenzo 50Steel superyacht equipped with fuel cell technology which is due for delivery in 2024.

It comes after Sanlorenzo’s sister shipyard Bluegame unveiled a hydrogen-powered chase boat designed to be used at the America’s Cup.