Here is a catamaran that is lighter than its counterparts and is powered by renewable energy. This catamaran built by boat-builder Drassanes Dalmau doesn’t demand a very powerful engine as in conventional boats. The credit of the design of propulsion system goes to the team of Jordi Llorca of Institute of Energy Technology, Prof Victor Fuses and Prof Ricard Bosch of the Department of Electrical Engineering and one PhD student.
One important innovation used in the propulsion system is its design that uses two electric motors connected to multiple energy sources: a diesel generator and a set of 90 lead batteries. This enables the boat to navigate for four hours continuously at six or seven knots. The batteries and the motor can be charged in an hour and half.
This boat, ‘Eco Slim’ has a seating capacity of 150, its length and width is 24 m and 10.5 m respectively. It is intended mainly for tourism, unlike other boats meant for inland waterways.
Eco Slim can cruise at eight knots. It gets power by electricity generated by solar panels, wind turbines, batteries and diesel-engine thermal generators, which makes it environment friendly.
The hull of the boat is special because it uses vacuum infusion system. Drassanes Dalmau got it constructed with the help from Isonaval. The boat was built following the process used in manufacturing car bodywork. Under this, the port and starboard were joined together after being made separately. As a result, the weight gets reduced by 50 per cent as compared to the traditional models. Also, the hydrodynamic lines of the boat has helped in reducing the hydrodynamic resistance by 20 per cent, which actually makes a huge difference. These features have enabled the boat to work using less powerful engines.