A sci-fi megayacht on a mission to save the planet, Earth 300 is an emission-free research lab at sea that treats scientists like rock stars. Rose Dykins reports
Superyacht concept Earth 300 envisions a vessel that can welcome a crew of scientists, industry experts and VIP guests to inspire “an era of ecological imagination” as they search for solutions to secure our planet’s future.
The idea is to create a collaborative eco-luxury yacht that sails constantly, fostering a cross-pollination of ideas between brilliant minds from all over the world, as the seek to tackle issues such as carbon emissions, pollution, ecosystem degradation, food and water security and global health resilience.
As well as scientists, an elite crew of 20 experts from different fields – such as economics, engineering, exploration and the arts – will be invited on board.
Conceived by Singaporean entrepreneur Aaron Olivera, Earth 300 has 22 floating labs housed in a cutting-edge 13-storey “science sphere” where 165 of the world’s best scientists will have the facilities to conduct research in machine learning, robotics, artificial intelligence and real-time data processing. It also has the first-ever quantum computer at sea.
“We wanted to build the Olympic torch of global science,” the organisation’s website reads, “to expand our knowledge and understanding of the universe, both above and below the ocean’s surface. The result is a collaborative, next-generation platform for state-of-the-art science at sea.
“Earth 300 represents an unparalleled opportunity for academia and private enterprise to collaborate on the most pressing challenges of our time. We’re bringing 160 of our brightest minds into our Science Sphere and equipping them with a level of technology never before seen on an ocean-going vessel.
“We believe scientists should be treated like rock stars, because they are the ones who are at the frontlines of all discovery and advancement, they invent vaccines and protect our health, they allow us to move humanity forward.”
The 100 per cent carbon emission-free ship will be powered by a molten salt reactor, an atomic energy source that Earth 300 says is safe, sustainable and emission-free. The first sea vessel to be powered by this technology, Earth 300 hopes to lead the way and inspire ocean transportation to adopt it.
Earth 300 also aspires to create an open-source innovation platform and accelerator programme, so that sustainable breakthroughs can be shared and communicated with the wider world, and ideas from experts on land can also be incorporated into the on board research taking place.
The incredible sci-fi superyacht is scheduled to launch in 2025. The vessel’s initial design is approved, and preliminary naval engineering work has been completed. Reports estimate VIP guests on board Earth 300 would pay approximately US$1 million to come on board, with 80 per cent of profits being ploughed back into the scientific breakthroughs at sea.
Olivera says: “We are living at a pivotal moment in human history, facing the greatest challenge since the dawn of man – climate change. So our goal is to ring the climate alarm on a global scale and inspire an era of ecological imagination, spawning a new brand of planetary vanguard, ethical leaders who will support a new economic and ecological vision for the world.
“We want to build a global icon for science, designed as a scientific sculpture on the seas, to capture people’s attention and inspire their imagination.”