Gunboat G4: A fully foiling Tesla

Published on March 12th, 2015

by Bill Springer, Swizzle Media
Lots of very smart people have been working to develop and produce a reliable, affordable, effective, and lightweight electric/hybrid electric system to be used on yachts for decades! And I’m not going to bore you with the details of all the electric yacht motors that were launched with great fanfare only to founder on the rocks of electrical engineering reality. But after spending a large and fascinating chunk of time with Oceanvolt‘s Janne Kjellman (a very smart engineer from Finland), I’m going to make a not so dramatic prediction: These folks have figured it out.

And the groundbreaking Gunboat G4 that’s just about to literally “fly” (it looks fast even on a concrete floor, doesn’t it) out of the Dutch boatyard where it was built is making the most of this game-changing technology. And be sure to watch for the full story of the G4 and other disruptive designs that will be running in an upcoming issue of Boat International.

And I say Oceanvolt has figured it out for a couple of reasons. First, they’ve developed a fully integrated system. They’ve designed everything—the motor, and the saildrive arm, and the batteries, and the solar panels and every detail down to the elegant control lever and all the necessary software and touch screen displays to work together seamlessly with a small onboard generator. It’s a true hybrid system that’s reportedly efficient enough to provide the required power and range that can rival a similar diesel system, and provide all the benefits of electric propulsion—utterly silent running, instant torque, extreme weight reduction, simplicity, power regeneration, and don’t forget “greenness” that—let’s face it—will never be possible with a conventional diesel engine(s) and separate generator system. They’ve even developed a smartphone app that will show you the system’s state of charge (as well as the location of your boat and other useful info) anywhere in the world. Needless to say, Oceanvolt has won its share of awards too.

Much more… click here.

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