A fuel-cell system that Toyota developed for marine applications is now being used aboard Energy Observer, a former racing catamaran that’s on a six-year voyage as the “first energy-autonomous hydrogen vessel,” the company said in a statement.
Energy Observer is powered by renewable-energy electricity and an on-board system that produces carbon-free hydrogen from seawater. The voyage launched in June 2017 from Saint-Malo Port in France.
Toyota’s Environmental Challenge 2050 aims to help “establish a future society in harmony with nature.” The company introduced the fuel-cell system last year in the Mirai, which it said is the first mass-produced hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicle.
“After three years and nearly 20,000 nautical miles of development, the Energy Observer energy supply and storage system is now very reliable, and we look forward to the next step of the project — get a reliable and affordable system available for our maritime community,” said Victorien Erussard, founder and captain of Energy Observer. “Our mission is to promote clean-energy solutions, and we share with Toyota the same vision for a hydrogen society.”
“Our European R&D team has worked hard with the team of the Energy Observer to create and install this module,” said Johan van Zyl, president and CEO of Toyota Motor Europe. “This project shows that the Toyota fuel cell technology can be used in any environment and can be spread throughout many business opportunities.”
Click here for more about Energy Observer.