A quiet day on our waterways can be often ruined by the sound of incredibly noisy outboard engines – and the sound below the waterline can be just as loud as above it.
Small two stroke outboard engines also emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs), nitrogen oxide, benzene and carbon emissions. Simply put, outboard engine powered boating isn’t exactly the most environmentally friendly pastime.
Recreational boating is another area where solar energy may provide some green alternatives.
The solar-powered Solar Star 23 cruise boat will make its public debut with a journey along the 584 kilometre long Erie Canal, starting in Buffalo; New York.
The 7 metre craft, manufactured in Arizona, boasts a revolutionary displacement Trimaran-shaped hull, designed by New Zealand’s Tim Clissold.
While details of the Solar Star 23 are a little scant, a similar craft is featured on Mr. Clissold’s site – the Elotri 701/Solar Star 22. The Solar Star 22 provides seating for six, a double bunk below and the option for a private toilet. Weighing just 700kg, a family car can easily tow the craft. The Solar Star 22 features a 3kW electric motor and 3 x 200w solar panels.
As with the Solar Star 22, the lid on the 23; upon which the panels are mounted, raises off the cockpit to provide shelter for the crew.
According to a related article on TodaysTHV, the Solar Star 23 can attain a speed of around 15 knots. The manufacturers intend proving the boat can be driven over a full 24 hour period; stating given the size of the battery bank, enough charge will be stored to power the boat through the night.
Cost of the Solar Star 23 starts at around USD $45,000.