AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Energy Observer, the world’s first boat to be powered solely by renewable energy and hydrogen, sailed through the waters of Amsterdam canals testing newly installed wind turbine thrusters.
Two Oceanwings, vertical-axis wind turbines, were installed on the boat to reduce the vessel’s energy consumption, accelerate its speed and enable it to produce energy and hydrogen while navigating.
The boat is covered in solar panels and has two wind turbines on either side of the cabin to power it. However, when there is no sun or wind, the boat will use hydrogen as a fuel, generated by electrolysis, powered by the renewable energies themselves.
Energy Observer is a product of a five-year project conceived by former French navy officer and now the boat’s captain, Victorien Erussard.
Together with his friend, documentary filmmaker and scuba diver, Jacques Delafosse, the two men embarked on a round-the-world trip that is set to last six years.
After touring France in 2017, visiting Mediterranean ports in 2018, Amsterdam is one of the first stops on Energy Observer’s trip around northern Europe planned for 2019.
The crew plans to make 101 stop-overs in 50 countries, stopping to raise awareness about the innovative project along the way.