Athena - First Light gives way to first Breath When years become months and months become weeks the reality of what is happening at Royal Huisman Shipyard literally takes ones breath away. In November 1999 the contract for the Athena project was signed and after a year of development and design construction started in January 2001. What was not so long ago a mass of metal, wood and equipment has been transformed into the long awaited 3 mast schooner, Athena. At some 90m she represents by all accounts the largest privately commissioned sailing yacht to have been built; and certainly the largest one to be built in aluminum. Regardless of firsts, Athena emerged into the light of day on June 4, piggy backed from her temporary home on pairs of remote controlled hydraulic wheel sets. She continued her short journey as she was driven onto a 100m transportation pontoon that is locked to the quay side in front of the yard by a special docking station. After passing several bridges the floating parade will continue across Holland’s inland sea, the IJsselmeer for a dry dock launching in Amsterdam. With many onboard systems including engines and generators already tested, she will before her departure receive a 225 ton molten injection of lead ballast, critically placed in her keel according to the real weight obtained prior to her transportation. Besides easing the load on the wheel sets this final weight calculation will precisely locate the centre of gravity whereby meeting Naval Architect, Gerard Dijkstra’s ballast and trim requirements. Following her launch Athena will berth in Amsterdam and weather permitting, her three 60m Rondal masts with associated rigging will be immediately stepped. Fitted with in mast furling topsails and gaff rigged roll-away booms the rigging stage will be an exciting moment, bringing a sense of proportion to complete the visual profile of the yacht. Athena’s construction has tested and honed the management skills of the Huisman organization. Working for the first time with a team of outside industry specialists, the usual ‘under the one roof approach’ at the yard was extended to include teaming up with the likes of Heinen and Hopman, Vuyk engineering, Imtech, Akerboom and Cleton to increase capacity without increasing overhead. With her interior virtually complete the Pieter Beeldsnijder styling can at last be fully appreciated as protective covering gives way to paintings, tables and soft furnishings. And as carpets, lights and even music continue to fill the intimate spaces on board; Athena’s first light will soon become her first breath. It is hard to believe that whilst handover is planned for September following extensive sea trials that she is nearing completion. She represents the culmination of many hours of hard work by a dedicated team of craftsmen that should have pride as their middle names. Indeed Athena represents not only the efforts of the Huisman team but she is reflective of the skills and work ethic that keeps Holland on the map, being recognized as a leader in custom yachts. Time schedule Transport to yard quay onto barge.................June 2004 Transport to Amsterdam and launching..........July / August 2004 Testing, commissioning and sail trials.............August 2004 Delivery...........................................................September2004 Athena Specifications... Three masted Schooner Yacht designed by: Naval Architects Pieter Beeldsnijder Design (PBD) Gerard Dijkstra & Partners (GD&P) Interior Styling Pieter Beeldsnijder Design (PBD) Built by Royal Huisman Shipyard L.o.a. spars 90.00 mtr. (295.28 ft.) L.o.a. hull 79.25 mtr. (260.01 ft.) L.o.d. 77.04 mtr. (252.76 ft.) L.c.w.l. 60.52 mtr. (198.56 ft.) Beam max. (incl. rubrail) 12.20 mtr. ( 40.03 ft.) Draft (incl. keel) 5.50 mtr. ( 18.04 ft.) Mast height 60.00 mtr. (196,85 ft.) Bowsprit length 13.97 mtr. ( 45.83 ft.) Displ. c.w.l. ± 1.068 tons (2,354,497 lbs) Ballast ± 221.5 tons (488.316 lbs) Hull speed 18.9 knots Steering system Hydraulic power steering system 1x SR662 FCP Tenfjord/Rolls Royce rudder motor Main engine 2x Caterpillar 3516B, 1492 kW (2000 HP) @ 1600 rpm Gearbox ZF 7540 NR CEW – Reduction 3,429:1 Propeller installation 2x Wärtsilä Propulsion (former Lips) automatic variable pitch propeller, diam. 1600 mm, four blades with high skew Bow / stern thruster Bow Holland Roer Propeller 300-60 tunnel thruster, 275 HP Stern Holland Roer Propeller 300 tunnel *retractable* thruster, 275 HP Tank capacities: fuel +/- 105.648 ltr. water +/- 29.215 ltr. grey/black +/- 5.530 ltr. The first picture is Athena leaving her place of "berth".