electric power

New Partnership Will Develop Independence 60 Green Yacht


Click for larger view of Independence Green Yachts 60 -- Artist's Rendering

Independence Green Yachts 60 -- Artist's Rendering

HB Marine and Independence Green Yachts yesterday announced a partnership that will form a joint venture to develop the Independence 60 Luxury Yacht that IGY started a few years ago. The Independence 60 is billed as the “world’s first ‘no compromise’ sustainable yacht.” A combination of solar cells, hydrogen production and storage and fuel cells provide complete independence from fossil fuel.

Here’s what the two companies had to say yesterday:

“The partnership between HB Marine, owner of a patented technology for the production, storage, and use of hydrogen aboard marine vessels, and Independence Green Yachts, developer of the solar/hydrogen powered Independence 60 power yacht, is a very compelling and timely combination. The joint venture will offer the marine industry fully integrated and self sustainable yachts (like the Independence 60) as well as clean energy power and propulsion systems for new construction and retrofits of existing yachts.

IGY is the developer of the Independence 60, the first totally self-sufficient, solar/hydrogen powered motor yacht that requires no fossil fuels or internal combustion engines. “Building a sustainable boat that can cruise cleanly, quietly and without ever having to use fossil fuels has been my dream since the Navy,” said Fred Berry President of IGY. “In conjunction with HB Marine, we can make this dream a reality.”
HB Marine has developed and patented internationally, a hydrogen-based, multi-use power and propulsion system for all types of marine vessels using readily available technology. “We have been searching for the right marine partner to bring this clean technology to market. The unique design of the Independence 60 effectively integrates the best of clean energy marine power and propulsion technologies , which will open a new era of simple, clean, quiet, reliable and sustainable yachting,” said Bruce Wood, Managing Director of HB Marine.”

The power system for the Independence 60 represents the very cutting edge of energy generation, storage and management. To-date, that title has been held by Island Pilot’s DSe Hybrid, developed by Reuben Trane. The DSe has the solar cells and vertical wind turbines, but still relies on a diesel engine/generator to recharge the batteries on cloudy days or when energy usage exceeds a little more than 6 kW. The Independence 60 has twin azimuthing electric motors. The system takes electricity from the solar arrays, or from the battery bank, and uses an electrolyzer to separate pure water from a watermaker (or, downstream in the process from a fuel cell)  into molecular hydrogen, which is then stored in a room-temperature, normal atmosphere metal and then provided upon demand to a fuel cell, which will generate a lot more electricity to replenish batteries, or to provide power to an inverter, and through a service panel to the electric motors.

Here is a simplified diagram of the power system aboard:

Click for larger view of Independence Green 60 Power Schematic -- Graphic from IGY 60 Brochure

Independence Green 60 Power Schematic -- Graphic from IGY 60 Brochure

Have a look at the yacht in this updated brochure.

Here are the basic specs on the boat:

Independence Green 60

•LOA:      59′ 5″
•LWL:      53′
•Beam:     14′
•Draft:        4′
•Displacement:      61,000 lbs
•(2) 75 KW 480 V AC external azimuthing submersible electric motors
•Fuel:      Water
•Energy source:      The Sun
•Fresh water:            200 USG
•Black water:               84 USG
•Grey water:              300 USG
•Top speed:                13 knots*
•Cruising speed:         8 knots*
•Range at cruise:      6 00 nm*
•Range at 6 knots:   1200 nm*

*Figures are based from Engineering estimates
More detailed specifications are available on the Independence Green website here.

Copyright © 2010 by OceanLines LLC.  All rights reserved.

Posted by Tom in Boats, Construction & Technical, Cruising Under Power, Electronics, Engines, Passagemaking News, Powerboats, Technology

Torqeedo Ups the Horsepower for Electric Outboard

Earlier this year I wrote a Wish List item about the advantages of a single, common fuel for all marine engines; the issue being the need to carry gasoline for a tender wile operating an otherwise diesel-powered boat.  There may be another option and that is the one provided by Torqeedo, manufacturer of an innovative line of electric-powered outboards.  The company’s latest offering, the Cruise 4.0 R has a thrust equivalent to a 9.9 hp gas outboard, which makes it a good power match for an inflatable or light RIB up to about 11 feet or so, depending on your need for speed.

Torqeedo Cruis 4.0 R Electric Outboard -- Photo: Torqeedo, Inc.

Torqeedo Cruis 4.0 R Electric Outboard -- Photo: Torqeedo, Inc.

Torqeedo motors utilize a special onboard computer that includes an integral GPS.  This allows the system to display not only speed, but time and distance remaining on available charge.  This information is presented on the remote throttle display.  The motor uses a special 48 volt lead-gel, AGM battery bank or two high-performance lithium manganese batteries.  The company says the Cruise 4.0 R achieves an efficiency of more than 50 percent, which is significantly higher than most electric propulsion motors.

While we think the Cruise 4.0 R is a great alternative for a passagemaker who doesn’t want to deal with finding and carrying good gasoline, Torqeedo also suggests the motor is a good  choice for boats on “green” lakes, pontoon boats, sailboats and catamarans.  In fact, the company tested the new model on a “well-stocked, 24″ pontoon boat with 25” pontoons and seven people aboard — achieving a speed of 6.1 mph.

The motor is not cheap, with a suggested retail price of $3,699, although it likely has a much more competitive total cost-of-ownership when you consider the cost of gas and oil and the maintenance requirements of reciprocating engines used in salt water.  The Torqeedo unit comes with a cable set, fuse, main switch, remote throttle, magnetic off/on switch and a link-arm for connecting to standard steering systems.

Copyright © 2009 OceanLines LLC

Posted by Tom in Boats, Technology