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This Planet Spotlight was created on Jul 26, 2016 @ 05:11:02 pm

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Oceans UFO House Boats

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UFO-shaped yacht has its own garden and a stunning underwater viewing deck

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While you can always head for the hills to wait out the apocalypse, a more stylish option could be a fully sustainable floating home from Italian mini yacht-maker Jet Capsule. The company has drawn up a concept for a saucer-shaped UFO, or Unidentified Floating Object, which offers a completely off-grid existence floating on the ocean.

According to the company's co-founders, Pierpaolo Lazzarini and Luca Solla, the UFO is intended for "living in a floating house and moving slowly around the world." "Slowly" in this case means a leisurely maximum speed of 3.5 knots (4 mph), using a waterjet-propelled Torqeedo Deep Blue 1800 electric motor.

This motor is connected to a battery that draws energy generated from 40 sq. m (430 sq. ft.) of solar panels in a closable lid atop the structure. Additional energy sources can be provided through optional wind and water turbines located on the top and below the main disc of the UFO, respectively, creating enough power to operate the home and motor.

The company says an onboard water generator would be used for converting rain or seawater to fresh drinking water, as well as watering a vegetable garden located on a deck that encircles the structure and measures 12.5 m (41 ft) in diameter.

Two half-spherical shells of fiberglass make up the two stories of the interior housing, with flexible floor plans for various configurations. Generally, the orb-shaped home will consist of a transformable kitchen and dining/living area on a 20-sq. m (215-sq. ft.) top level, with stairs leading down to a 10-sq. m (107-sq. ft.) submerged lower level with bathroom and bedroom surrounded by a large window for viewing sea life.

To keep the craft stable, the UFO uses a special elastic anchor system. "The main structure of the floating object can be aligned with the compass, keeping the position angle oriented on the desired cardinal direction, even in rough sea conditions," say the designers.

The company is currently seeking investors to build the first working prototype, at an estimated cost of US$800,000, with homes produced after that estimated at $200,000, which is actually cheaper than the average price of an, albeit larger, houseboat.

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