Plane, car or boat? Why is the solar boat on duty 1st?

SeaZen launches the first solar boat rental site in Beaulieu sur mer (between Nice and Monaco).

When one considers the means used in the automotive and aeronautical industries to develop prototypes of solar vehicles one can wonder why it is finally a solar boat that the first is operated in rental and able to carry up to 8 passengers!

Solar Car

In common, the design of a 100% autonomous vehicle requires in all cases to start from scratch. It would be illusory to seek solar autonomy from an ersatz of a thermal vehicle in which one puts an electric motor, batteries and solar collectors.

But the comparison stops there, we think that the "ease" all relative in producing a solar boat depends on the weight of the batteries, the surface of the solar panels as well as the cruising speeds.

Battery weight
On a plane or an automobile, the weight of the batteries is an important brake whereas on a boat it is ballast.

The surface of solar panels
A priori, the airplane seems to have the least surface limitations while the car and the boat have gauge constraints (due to roads or harbor berth). But the boat prevails on the plane because it only needs 10m2 to allow 8 people to sail while leaving space for sunbathing. The advantage is also that, at sea and under a sun of lead, a solar roof brings a shade appreciated.

Cruising Speed
This is of course THE key factor. Only a pleasure boat can delight its passengers by advancing at 10km / h across more than 50 km traveled. On the road or in the air, this speed is not acceptable while at sea it corresponds exactly to the speed of traditional sailboats. It's called sailing. For comparison the Solar Impulse must advance at 85 km / h to fly and the Tesla owes its success to its speeds which honorably support comparison with thermal sports cars.

The result is that, began this summer the operation of a solar boat rental demonstrator in Beaulieu sur Mer. SunSeaRider, partner of the project, equips seaZen (TM) with its catamarans. Enjoy your summer vacation on the Côte d'Azur to meet us. Become a witness of the Energy Transition.

Guillaume Jacquet-Lagrèze
CEO Seamagine Eco Navigation

Photo credit:

(C) Tokai, Solar Impulse, Seamagine Eco Navigation