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DOST launches Filipino-made solar-powered e-boat

The boat can run for two hours after a four-hour slow charging session.

The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) and its partners launched a new electric boat (or e-boat) that runs on solar energy on Thursday at the Manila Yacht Club.

The boat, called the Safe, Efficient and Sustainable Solar-Assisted Plug-In Electric Boat (SESSY E-Boat), is a P19-million project that aims to contribute to the decarbonization of the maritime industry. It was developed by researchers from Mapua University, with co-funding from DOST and the Department of Energy.

The SESSY E-Boat had a demo run at the event, where it demonstrated its features and performance. DOST-Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development (PCIEERD) Director Enrico Paringit said the boat is highly efficient considering its size and form.

Paringit said the boat was designed for local maritime needs like for tourists. It can accommodate 10 passengers and two crew. However, its seats could be reconfigured for other purposes such as diving or snorkeling. The Maritime Industry Authority also reviewed the e-boat for safety standards.

The SESSY E-Boat is equipped with batteries and electric motors that were selected by the researchers, as well as their own developed automatic identification system or AIS.

The boat can run for two hours after a four-hour slow charging session. Using the solar panels, the e-boat can run for an additional two hours or more as long as the solar energy supply continues, PCIEERD said.

The DOST-PCIEERD is currently looking for possible technology adopters of the SESSY E-Boat, which has completed its prototype stage. The researchers are ready to replicate the e-boat is ready and are working towards commercialization.

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Image credit: PCIEERD Facebook

Bryan is a geek at heart and a tech enthusiast by choice. He has a strong background in corporate communications, marketing services, and customer relations having worked in the telecommunications and banking sectors for over two decades. In his spare time, he enjoys watching clips on YouTube and binge watching shows on Netflix.

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