The "Mercury", believed to be the fastest private yacht in the world, has been built for millionaire Greek ship-owner, Mr.
The "Mercury", believed to be the fastest private yacht in the world, has been built for millionaire Greek ship-owner, Mr. Stavros Niarchos, by the British firm of Vosper Ltd at Portsmouth, U.K.
Designed like the "Brave" class Fast Patrol Boats, build by the same company for the British Royal Navy, the 102-foot long Mercury is powered by three Bristol Siddeley Marine Proteus gas turbines and has a speed in excess of 50 knots. The Marine Proteus is a sea-going version of the Proteus turboprop engine used in the Bristol Britannia airliner.
It embodies a free power turbine and is, in consequence, so flexible that it can be used satisfactorily for all slow speed manoeuvring. The use of a free power turbine also enables the engine to deliver extremely high power at low or medium propeller speeds which gives the vessel rapid acceleration.
Engines of this type have many advantages. Their weight is about a quarter of that of a diesel of equal power and they are correspondingly compact. The absence of reciprocating movement means that there is virtually no vibration.
The luxurious, sleek craft had the owner's fittings, furniture and decoration installed at Travemunde, North Germany, under the supervision and to designs by Professor Pinnau. The Professor acted in this capacity for Mr. Niarchos' well-known yacht "Creole".
Extremely quiet at sea, the Mercury carries 25 tons of diesel gas oil on board and can cruise for 400 miles at 46 knots.