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Sierra Daily

Nov 08, 2012

Green One-Upmanship

Aquarius_eco_ship_2aThe sail-powered freighter Beluga Skysails was launched nearly five years ago, but the quest for renewable-energy powered commercial ships continues to amaze. Now comes word of a renewable two-fer, the Aquarius Eco Ship, which is powered partly by rigid sails that incorporate solar panels. Being designed by Japan’s Eco Marine Power, its so-called EnergySail could lower fuel use by 40 percent by relying on wind and solar power along with other energy-saving technologies. (And, as Cnet reports, “large vessels such as oil tankers could see annual fuel savings of 10 to 20 percent” -- which has a quirky why-bother? aspect to it, but every savings helps.)

Eco Marine Power hopes to launch the Golden Age of PV Sail with sea trials in 2013.

Image by Eco Marine Power

HS_ReedMcManusReed McManus is a senior editor at Sierra. He has worked on the magazine since Ronald Reagan’s second term. For inspiration, he turns to cartoonist R. Crumb’s Mr. Natural, who famously noted: “Twas ever thus.”

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