Please select your home edition
Edition
Hyde Sails 2022 One Design LEADERBOARD

Electric boats and motors- green alternative on the water

by Jeni Bone on 31 May 2011
Steven Mullie Eco Boats Australia. SW
Eco-friendly boating is a great option for reducing our footprint on the water and our reliance on fossil fuels.

Last summer, many Australians enjoyed their local waterways on a power boat - without realising the impact it has on the environment.

According to government agency research, a few hours in a petrol powered boat has a bigger environmental impact than a road trip by car from Sydney to Brisbane. Petrol powered marine engines are among the highest contributors of hydrocarbons, oxides, and nitrogen emissions in the country*.

But it's possible to have fun on the water without wrecking the planet. Eco Boats Australia offers electric boats and motors that are emission-free, low-maintenance, will cruise for a whole day, and cost less than a dollar to recharge.
Steven Mullie founded Eco Boats Australia Pty Ltd in 2008 to offer a green alternative in boating. Their product range encompasses electric boats, as well as electric inboard and outboard motors complete with batteries and charger.

'The beautiful thing is that electric boats are so quiet,' he said. 'Our Duffy electric boats for instance are a lifestyle boat, perfect for relaxed day or sunset cruising on the bay, river or harbour with family, friends or business associates.'

These new boats employ the latest technology, but electric boats themselves have been around since the late 1800s. They remained popular into the 1920s, when the arrival of the internal combustion engine saw people fuelling their boats with the faster technology. That's all changing now.

Steven said the threat of global warming and rising fuel prices had generated a lot of interest in electric boats in his native Holland. 'Electric boating is getting a lot of attention from Dutch councils who've decided to clean up their act, reducing noise and pollution on their waterways. Some rivers and canals already only allow electric-powered vessels.'

'In the USA, electric boats are a hit with owners of waterfront properties and are popular with both men and women because they are so easy to operate and maintain,' he said.

Electric motors are quiet, clean, reliable and economical to run. Where combustion engines have hundreds of moving parts, which can all break down, an electric motor has just one moving part - they are extremely reliable and almost maintenance free. Especially for displacement vessels such as yachts and classic boats it makes sense to convert to electric drive, as relatively little power is needed to bring a boat up to its ‘hull speed’.

A 25 kg electric motor with a diameter of less than 300mm can replace a big and noisy diesel inboard giving you a quiet ride and lots of interior space in return.

Many yachting enthusiasts favour electric propulsion as it gives the same quiet experience under power as when under sail. Electric motors have full torque at any given RPM, which makes them ideal for low speed maneuvering inside a marina.

Batteries are generally fitted close to, or below the water line to add to the stability of the boat. Recharging can be done either by plugging in to shore power or via solar panels if the boat is on a mooring. Diesel-electric (hybrid) systems for larger craft and longer range are also available.

Eco Boats Australia represents the world’s leading brands in electric boating such as Duffy electric boats from California, Mastervolt-Bellmann inboard motors from Holland and highly efficient Torqeedo outboards from Germany. People are seeing the benefits of electric propulsion and Eco Boats has supplied boats and motors to many boaties across Australia over the past years.

Eco Boats operates out of Northbridge Marina (Sydney) with two demonstrator vessels that are also available for self-drive trips for people wanting to experience quiet and clean electric propulsion themselves. Pack a picnic and glide down Sydney’s Middle Harbour in style and complete silence.

More at www.ecoboats.com.au or Tel (02) 9929 8834.

[Sorry, this content could not be displayed]

*Source: Australian Government, Department of the Environment and Water Resources: 'Comparative Assessment of the Environmental Performance of Small Engines - Marine Outboards and Personal Watercraft'

According to this research one hour of operation of a boat that complies with US 2006 emission standards (i.e. has a relatively clean engine) produces the same pollution as about fifty cars operated at a similar speed. Older style outboard engines that do not comply with US EPA 2006 limits are likely to emit around ten times the amount of pollution compared to conforming engines.

Flagstaff 2021AUG - Excess 11 - FOOTERPantaenius 2022 - SAIL & POWER 1 FOOTER AUSHenri-Lloyd 2022 August Summer Sale - SW FOOTER

Related Articles

NZSailGP Team is back in action
In Copenhagen for Event 4 of SailGP Season 3 The New Zealand SailGP Team is back in action in Copenhagen for Event 4 of Season 3 of SailGP, and the team has a new target on its back after a dominant performance in Plymouth on and off the water.
Posted today at 1:00 pm
Swiss SailGP Team ready to race in Copenhagen
New crew line up with Nathan Outteridge making his debut as co-driver Swiss SailGP Team will race in Copenhagen over the next two days at the ROCKWOOL Denmark Sail Grand Prix. It's the fourth event in SailGP's global championship calendar, and the second event in the European leg of the league.
Posted today at 11:26 am
Great Britain team are out of Denmark SailGP
Damage from hitting an uncharted rock is not repairable in time The Great Britain SailGP Team are unable to compete in the ROCKWOOL Denmark Sail Grand Prix, after sustaining damage to their F50 race boat during practice racing in Copenhagen.
Posted today at 10:45 am
SailGP: Brits out after hitting uncharted rock
Three teams hit rocks during training in Copenhagen with the Brits being forced out of the event The Great Britain SailGP Team has lost a race against time to compete in the Rockwool Denmark Sail Grand Prix this weekend, after sustaining damage to its F50 race boat during practice racing on Thursday in Copenhagen.
Posted today at 9:51 am
Australian Yachting Championships preview
Hamilton Island to host the most competitive championships yet The best grand prix yachts and multihulls from around Australia and overseas will take to the water for the 2022 Australian Yachting Championships (AYC) at Hamilton Island in the Whitsundays, where racing takes place from 21-27 August.
Posted today at 9:17 am
Prominent RNZYS members resign over Cup hosting
Michael Fay: 'That, to us, is a slap in the face for everyone and everything that has gone before.' Radio New Zealand reported this evening that three prominent members of the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron have resigned over the decision to allocate the the venue hosting for the 2024 America's Cup to Barcelona.
Posted today at 6:35 am
Sibling rivalry heats-up at 2022 HIRW
Windcraft Yachts is gearing-up for Australia's premier keelboat sailing event Windcraft Yachts is gearing-up for a long-awaited return to Australia's premier keelboat sailing event, Hamilton Island Race Week from 20-27 August.
Posted today at 1:40 am
Could the Kiwis be Tom Slingsby's biggest threat?
A new rival has entered the ring A new rival has entered the ring, with Tom Slingsby confirming that the New Zealand side could now be the Australia Team's top competition to beat at the ROCKWOOL Denmark Sail Grand Prix, taking place this weekend.
Posted today at 1:19 am
F-18 Raid World Championship day 2
A day of tactics into the fog, and a Swedish team in the lead The start of the sailing on the was postponed due to prognosis of light winds. And the teams could have a soft wake up in the morning. The start was set to 11 o'clock and by then there was warm weather and a steady breeze at about 6 to 10 knots.
Posted on 18 Aug
2022 ILCA 4 Youth Worlds at Vilamoura day 4
No races were sailed due to lack of wind No races were sailed today at the 2022 ILCA 4 Youth World Championships, due to lack of wind.
Posted on 18 Aug