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Phil Sharp Announces Zero Emission Hydrogen Campaign that will Culminate in the 2024 Vendée Globe

By February 16, 2021 4   min read  (650 words)

February 16, 2021 |

Phil Sharp Announces Zero Emission Hydrogen Campaign that will Culminate in the 2024 Vendee Globe

The British sailor, based in France, aims to demonstrate the potential of renewable energies by sailing around the world using a Hydrogen Power Module; a zero emission solution for boats for which he has led the development that has just been awarded the “Solar Impulse Efficient Solution” Label, a proof of high standards in profitability and sustainability.

Today, he announces a racing and technological programme spanning over the next four years, including The Ocean Race and culminating with the Vendée Globe 2024-25.

Taking hydrogen offshore

British sailor Phil Sharp announces his intention to compete in major offshore sailing regattas over the next four years aboard an IMOCA yacht that will also uniquely be a technology platform.

The objective of the Oceanslab – Race to Zero Emissions campaign is to demonstrate and accelerate the uptake of high performance clean innovations, through the world’s toughest ocean races, thanks to the development of a new clean Hydrogen Power Module (HPM).

HPM officially labelled as a solution to change the world

The HPM developed by Genevos, a cleantech spin-off to OceansLab, has been attributed the “Solar Impulse Efficient Solution” Label following an assessment performed by external independent experts and based on verified standards. It is thereby joining the #1000solutions challenge, an initiative by the Solar Impulse Foundation to select solutions that meet high standards in profitability and sustainability and present them to decision-makers to fast-track their implementation.

This follows confirmation from France’s region of Nouvelle-Aquitaine to support the development and commercialisation of the HPM through start-up innovation funding. Genevos also joins as an official Member of the European Clean Hydrogen Alliance, strengthening its role in supporting the EU’s commitment to reach carbon neutrality by 2050.

Led by Green Skipper and cleantech innovator Phil Sharp, the HPM enables hydrogen and fuel cell technology to be accessible to the maritime sector. As one of the first world-wide to develop an integrated and marinised solution for zero emissions hydrogen power aboard vessels, the innovation aims to support the sector’s clean energy transition, improve air quality, and help address climate change.

World firsts

The next step for the OceansLab – Race to Zero Emissions sailing project – will be to take the prototype HPM across oceans to demonstrate the important role that hydrogen and fuel cells can play in decarbonising vessels. Along with breaking World Records key events include the crewed and multi-stopover The Ocean Race (prev. the Volvo Ocean Race) in 2022, the 2023 duo Transat Jacques Vabre race from France to Brazil, and the solo, non-stop Vendée Globe next taking place in 2024.

Opportunities exist for businesses and individuals passionate about cleantech and sustainability to join the campaign, which aims to make history by racing around the world showcasing hydrogen and fuel cell technology, importantly, with zero fossil fuels aboard.

Phil Sharp, Skipper and Technical Director, said: “It is fantastic to receive this important 1000 Efficient Solutions Label as recognition for the HPM as a clean and profitable solution, and also importantly to receive regional government support to help take our innovation forward. Hydrogen and fuel cells have a vital part to play in enabling the maritime sector to reach Net Zero by 2050. If we are to meet our climate change targets it is crucial that we start demonstrating this technology now through zero emission vessels to accelerate the hydrogen transition on our oceans.”

Bertrand Piccard, Chairman of the Solar Impulse Foundation, said: “We at Solar Impulse Foundation are very pleased to Label the Genevos Hydrogen Power Module as part of the first 1000 solutions to change the world. Hydrogen is not just the future, hydrogen is the present, and we need efficient solutions such as this developed by Genevos in order to start reducing emissions on our oceans and our impact on the planet. Our world needs to find new ways of improving the quality of human life. Let’s replace old polluting devices with modern clean technologies.”

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