Engineer and sailor Jean-Marc Simiand is looking for partners to sail the first autonomous catamaran.

Simian, 53, got the idea of a 100% renewable energy-powered catamaran whilst working for car manufacturer Renault on an electrical system project.

The engineer’s eureka moment came when the lithium-ion batteries made an appearance in the automotive industry, prompting Jean-Marc Simiand to conclude that he could implement the technology on a catamaran. The vessel would run on solar and wind power without the need for fossil fuel.

The French boating enthusiast intends to sail around the world on his zero-emission craft, built by World Eco Sail, passing through the Panama Canal for 40 nautical miles using batteries that store energy for the entire crossing.

Simiand will be sailing with experienced skippers on his journey around the world and he’s hoping to depart on his adventure in September 2016.

 

  • While this type advancement won’t be every boater’s “cup of tea”, it is a wonderful step forward in boating technology. Maybe one day we will have reliable and affordable alternative power gensets to be a backup for a full electric drive system in smaller pleasure-craft.