Given the several alternatives of distributing commodities to the world economy, shipping holds the largest share since it is capable of carrying over 90% of global trade. The shipping vessels are, however, propelled by fossil fuels. Despite their useful contribution to the growth and development of the economy, over-dependence on fossils fuels has adverse environmental effects in addition to their high prices. The use of fossils fuels accounts for approximately 2.5% of global carbon emissions and may escalate to alarming levels soon. This calls for an action to address the dependence on internal combustion engines and the use of oil. Noise pollution and toxic emissions from fuel engines are devastating to marine life and the experience of those on board. To address these significant global concerns, most manufacturers in the voyage industry are finding alternative methods of propulsion. One of their notable achievements is the innovation of the cutting-edge solar-powered yacht catamarans. Such vessels are exclusively powered by solar; they are silent and environmentally friendly. The integrated solar modules generate enough power to propel the cruising speeds and to supply all the appliances on board. The owners may, however, install diesel engines as an emergency alternative should the solar system become faulty while on a voyage or incase they need speed over long distances. Keep reading to learn more about the solar-powered yachts catamarans.
How solar power works
The solar modules convert the direct energy from the sun with the help of an inverter. The power system then provides alternating current to propel the power catamaran and the electric appliances onboard. The solar-powered yachts have lightweight lithium batteries for storing excess energy. Despite being expensive, lithium batteries are safe, durable, and the most reliable energy storage batteries when it comes to a voyage. The solar panels are fixed at the hardtop sections of the flybridge rather than integrating them on the top. Such fixation helps in overcoming resistance from the wind against the yacht.
Who is the developer of the solar-powered yacht?
Although more researchers and institutions have developed different fashions of solar-powered yachts, the first solar-powered yacht was solarwave 46, designed by Micheal Kohler and his wife Heike in 2009. Their achievement was driven by years of experience in using different cruisers, boats, and sailboats on different waters. Micheal was not impressed by the carbon emissions of the fossils fuel, and he resolved to find alternative energy for propelling yachts. After various testing and analyzing different energy sources, only solar power matched the interest of Micheal and Heike. They then launched solarwave in 2009 as proof of their concept design. He is now the CEO and founder of Austrian manufacturing company-silent yachts and developer of the latest release of silent 55 solar-powered yachts.
Benefits of solar power
Solar-powered yachts have unlimited range, even during cloudy days. They have an automated range extender, which detects when the lithium batteries are low to recharge them. The capacity of the cells is enough to provide for all energy requirements in the yacht. There is, therefore, cruise for weeks without the need for refueling or using the generator.
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The solar energy system provides continuous energy. You can, therefore, have fun by watching a TV, enjoy cold drinks, take snaps, and live videos. The heating system warms up the boat efficiently when necessary. This also works for cooling during hot weather.
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Most solar-powered yachts are lightweight due o their bionic design, and use of high-quality resins and carbon fibers in their construction. Their internal furniture is composed of stiff and lightweight composite plates. Each significant reduction in weight reduces drag, enabling fast propulsion.
All essential parts of the yacht are redundant to ensure more safety. All components are configured to avoid overloading. This makes solar-powered yachts safer compared to the typical propulsion systems. Also, solar-powered boats do not cause noise pollution or release toxic emissions to the environment.
Solar-powered vessels are the future of the world economy. This is because overdependence on fossil fuel will deplete the reserves, leaving us solar-powered vessels as the only distribution option. Their use is, however, economical since they solely depend on solar energy and have low maintenance costs; they are efficient and reliable.