sunny.png
Monday October 18th, 2021 10:26AM

Electric boats making waves without the noise

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

The auto industry has raced ahead on an electric wave with more manufacturers joining the race seemingly every day.

The boating industry has sputtered far behind, bogged down by low-horsepower engines and batteries that take up nearly half the boat.

That's in the process of changing.

Bolstered by new technology, the electric boats are now faster, have smaller batteries with longer ranges and are still zero emission.

“Electric boats used to be good for just cruising around,” said Alex Mongeon, CEO of Montreal-based Vision Marine Technologies. “Now they have more power and last a long longer.”

Vision Marine has helped lead the charge in more powerful electric boats. Other companies riding the electric motor wave include Swedish luxury boat builder X Shore and Arc, started by former SpaceX employees.

An avid boat racer and electrician by trade, Mongeon and Vision Marine began working in 2015 on developing a more powerful yet still efficient electric outboard motor.

They created the E-Motion 180, the first electric boat engine to use lithium batteries.

The electric outboard boasts 180 horsepower and can reach speeds of 60 mph, a first in electric boating. The E-motion 180, which costs about $5,000 more than a standard internal combustion engine, can be used with any boats that use a 180 HP outboard gas engine, typically between 18 to 26 feet.

The engines can fully charge overnight and all that's needed is a 220-volt outlet — a boating version of plug and play. Maintenance is far less than ICE engines because there are fewer moving parts.

The electric engines are noiseless, odorless and smokeless, so there's no more yelling at each other while onboard or leaving a layer of smoke in your wake.

Sales of the E-Motion 180 started in May with delivery expected later this year.

“It is so cool because nobody has gone to this comparable horsepower,” said Randy Truesdale, chief operating officer of SBX Marine, a Florida-based custom boat builder and brokerage company. “You see some of the electric motors, you might get one that says it’s, you know, 50 to 70 horsepower equivalent, but nobody’s done what we’re doing with the new 180.”

Electric boating has been embraced by celebrities like Drake, Robert De Niro and Greta Thunberg, according to Vision Marine. Many tour operators have turned to electric boats, and so have cities for rental and water taxis.

Many waters have been designated marine protected areas — 26% in the United States, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration — which ban motorized boats. Many allow electric boats because they are cleaner and emit no sound.

“The only sound you’ll hear is the water hitting the hull and people enjoying themselves,” Mongeon said.

And a lot more people have been enjoying themselves on the water during the pandemic.

According to National Marine Manufacturers Association, sales of powerboats were up 12% in 2020 with more than 310,000 new sales, the highest numbers since before the recession of 2008.

Boat rental companies have seen their numbers soar as well, including a 700% growth year-over-year growth for GetMyBoat, the world's largest boat rental company.

“In the rental cycle, it has become hugely popular because of the great activity for people who don’t necessarily want to buy a boat," Truesdale said. ”You can kind of relate to what’s going on with COVID and allowing people to get outside. Boats are kind of like the perfect tool for social distancing."

The new era of electric boats, with the added power and limited environmental impact, are making it even more enjoyable.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Business, AP Technology News
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Electric boats making waves without the noise
The auto industry has raced ahead on an electric wave with more manufacturers joining the race seemingly every day
12:31PM ( 4 minutes ago )
Biden blasts high court failure to block Texas abortion curb
President Joe Biden is lambasting the Supreme Court’s decision not to block a new Texas law banning most abortions in the state
12:31PM ( 4 minutes ago )
More than a dozen deaths after Ida remnants slam Northeast
The remnants of Hurricane Ida dumped historic rain over the tri-state area, with at least 18 deaths linked to flooding in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania
12:22PM ( 13 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Greek health care workers protest compulsory vaccinations
Hundreds of Greek health care workers accompanied by ambulances with sirens blaring have marched through central Athens to protest regulations mandating coronavirus vaccines for anyone working in their sector
11:50AM ( 46 minutes ago )
Russia urges Apple, Google to remove Navalny app from stores
Russia’s state communications watchdog has warned Apple and Google that they could face fines if they fail to remove an app created by allies of jailed Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny from their stores
11:45AM ( 50 minutes ago )
Deal with OxyContin maker leaves families angry, conflicted
A landmark settlement in the nation’s opioid epidemic is forcing the owners of OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma to give up the company and pay out $4.5 billion
11:21AM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Business
EXPLAINER: Congress asks tech companies for Jan. 6 records
A House committee investigating the U.S. Capitol insurrection has requested that telecommunications and social media companies preserve the personal communications of hundreds of people who may have somehow been connected to the attack
6:42AM ( 5 hours ago )
China orders ride-hailing firms to correct unfair tactics
Chinese regulators have ordered ride-hailing platforms to correct unfair market tactics amid a crackdown on the internet sector that has spooked investors and shaved billions off the valuations of some of China’s biggest technology companies
2:25AM ( 10 hours ago )
Japan opens Digital Agency to boost government technology
Japan is aiming to give a technological upgrade to government services and recordkeeping with the opening of the Digital Agency to overhaul antiquated systems that have had their shortfalls highlighted by the pandemic
9:42PM ( 14 hours ago )
AP Technology News
Biden blasts high court failure to block Texas abortion curb
President Joe Biden is lambasting the Supreme Court’s decision not to block a new Texas law banning most abortions in the state
12:31PM ( 5 minutes ago )
More than a dozen deaths after Ida remnants slam Northeast
The remnants of Hurricane Ida dumped historic rain over the tri-state area, with at least 18 deaths linked to flooding in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania
12:22PM ( 13 minutes ago )
4 days after Ida, storm recovery is uneven across Louisiana
The power outages after Hurricane Ida are making the sweltering summer unbearable in much of New Orleans
12:22PM ( 14 minutes ago )
Jan. 6 riot defendant returned to jail for using internet
A federal judge is ordering a prominent participant in the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol to return to jail, saying he violated his pretrial release conditions by accessing the internet to watch false conspiracies about the election
12:15PM ( 21 minutes ago )
Al Capone's former South Florida home slated for demolition
The South Florida house that gangster Al Capone owned for nearly two decades, and died in, is facing demolition plans
12:10PM ( 25 minutes ago )