According to its stats, the system emits about the same amount of carbon dioxide in a day as a person breathing out. To put that in some context, it would take a vessel equipped with the technology about 2,000 years to emit the same amount of emissions as a diesel generator does in a single day. For those who can afford it (and—assuming you have a yacht—you probably can), the space freed up below the deck by the fuel cell's smallish design will allow for "more opportunities to introduce electric-powered home comforts," according to Ken Freivokh, a yacht designer."A future yacht in five years time will be aimed at designing the whole yacht round a cell and accommodating a fuel cell will be standard issue in the marine design industry," said Freivokh. Unless this technology (or a similar one) eventually finds its way into the vast majority of the boating industry, particularly the super-polluting shipping class, its impact may prove limited.
We're not sure how many people will get to benefit from this technology—at least initially—but it's bound to please those who've been clamoring for a more eco-friendly alternative to a boat's conventional (and emissions-spewing) diesel generator. Voller Energy will begin test-driving its latest fuel-cell system, the Emerald, in a 55-foot concept yacht within the coming weeks.