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Superyacht designer says Bill Gates isn't buying its hydrogen-powered vessel

The environmentally friendly vessel would be a world-first, the Sunday Telegraph reported. However, the boat's designer denies any links to Gates.

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Bill Gates on dry land

James Martin/CNET

Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates is hoping to hit the seas in the the world's first hydrogen-powered superyacht, according to the Sunday Telegraph, and it'll set him back around $645 million. He's reportedly commissioned a 370-foot Aqua luxury ship designed by Dutch marine architects Sinot.

However, Sinot denied in an email to CNET that it had sold the Aqua concept to Gates. The designer "has no business relationship" with the billionaire, it said, adding that reports about the vessel are "incorrect."

The Aqua designs include a pair of 28-ton vacuum-sealed tanks to store liquid hydrogen at minus 420 Fahrenheit. The vessels' fuel cells will combine hydrogen and oxygen to produce electricity, and water will be the only byproduct of the process. If Gates gets one, it will apparently have a diesel backup since there aren't many hydrogen refueling stations around at the moment.

The ship is scheduled to go to sea in 2024, Telegraph noted. Even though the superyacht will be environmentally friendly, it also sounds pretty luxurious -- it includes an infinity pool, helipad, spa and gym, according to the Guardian.

Gates Ventures, Bill Gates' investment firm, didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

First published at 3:10 a.m. PT.
Updated at 4 p.m. PT: Adds Sinot's denial and more detail.

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