Zyvex Marine, the division of Zyvex Technologies that employs molecular nanotechnology to marine design, engineering and manufacturing, has launched the Long Range Vessel, LRV-17. It is the first manned boat to be made of nano-composite materials.
The LRV-17 is modeled on the nano-composite based unmanned surface vessel, the Piranha. It was Piranha which catapulted Zyvex into the spotlight for novel nano-composite marine manufacture.
The LRV-17 is built out of the proprietary Arovex, which is a carbon fiber reinforced plastic with incorporated carbon nanotubes. Fuel efficiency is improved owing to the reduced structural weight resulting from the use of Arovex. It also provides for an increase in range by 1,500 nautical miles accompanied by a sprint speed of 40 knots. The LRV-17 has been sourced by Dubai-based maritime security company, Global Maritime Security Solutions (GMSS), which will deploy the vessels off the African coast and neighboring areas for naval security including protection from piracy.
The active gyroscope stabilizer in the LRV-17 facilitates enhanced sea handling and reduces factors contributing to human fatigue. Six crew members can remain at sea on board the LRV-17 for five days. Of these, only two are required to function as operators while the other four are for support. In the face of reported global piracy attacks in 2011 numbering 439 and the global economic impact of piracy in 2011 being pegged at $7 billion, the LRV-17 vessels are deemed to change the maritime security scene as they can tackle multiple pirate threats owing to their high speeds and long range escort.