© SemiSubGeneration

Trilobites are arthropods that populated the oceans 500 million years ago and now belong to a known fossil species. Nowadays, the name also stands for a futuristic yacht of Italian design. The Trilobis, as the boat is called, is an electrically powered yacht. “A unique combination of catamaran and submarine,” Giuseppe Carusi explains. He is the CEO of SemiSubGeneration, which specializes in the development of innovative eco=friendly yachts as well as semi-submerged buildings (hence the name).

Thanks to the shape of Trilobis, several modular units can form a ring that creates floating colonies.

The hull of the Trilobis is made of steel while the superstructure is made of aluminum, which makes it 80% recyclable. The glass windows are electrochemical. They change their opacity by means of an advanced electrochemical system. This can be done manually or automatically, depending on how light it is outside.

Eco-yacht on four levels

Photovoltaic panels on the upper side capture solar energy needed for the instruments in the control room. The electric motors are powered by hydrogen fuel cells that only produce clean drinking water as a waste material.

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The Trilobis is a 20-meter long yacht for six people. It is divided into four levels which are internally connected by a spiral staircase. The upper level is 3.5 meters above sea level. This is where the bridge is located, where the yacht is steered. It is possible to rotate 360 degrees around its axis very quickly.

Transparent underwater observation dome

The cabin is on the second level, which is 1.4 meters above the water. There is also the (small) deck here that is secured with a railing. At a level of eighty centimeters below sea level, half under water, are the sleeping cabins and wash area. This is also where the engine room is.

Three meters below sea level (completely under water) is a transparent observation dome. It is made of high-quality acrylic and has room for six seats. Thanks to the shape of Trilobis, several modular units can form a ring that creates floating colonies.

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The four levels of the eco-yacht. ©SemiSubGeneration

The yacht is capable of sailing the Mediterranean Sea (this ocean is home to 90 percent of the world’s largest yachts), but is primarily intended for use in shallower waters, e.g. in bays, near atolls and in maritime parks, such as the John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park (Florida). 

The tribolis has not been seen there yet. “Right now, we are in the final technical phase and ready for production. We are in the process of working with international investors to launch the project worldwide,” says Carusi. The Italian shipyard Fincantieri and the architectural group Giancarlo Zema were involved in its development.

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About the author

Author profile picture Ewout Kieckens is a Dutch journalist in Rome who writes about Italian lifestyle and culture. He has written books on diverse subjects such as the Vatican and Italian design. He is very interested in innovations, especially Italian contributions to progress.