Japan Launches First Partially Solar Powered Cargo Ship

December 24 2008 / by John Heylin
Category: Energy   Year: 2008   Rating: 2

aurigaleader.jpgJapan's largest shipping company, Nippon Yusen, has unveiled a cargo ship outfitted with enough solar panels to produce 40 Kilowatts of power.  Named the Auriga Leader, the energy comes from 328 solar panels outfitted on top of the ship which set the company back about $1.7 million dollars.  While 40 Kilowatts is a huge sum house-wise, it really only produces enough energy to power about 7% of the lighting systems on board.  But when one considers the size of the ship (frickin' HUGE) it should save them quite bit down the road.  When combined with Nippon's gel-like paint, it promises to save them hundreds of thousands down the road with this ship alone.

Honestly, it's surprising this kind of tech has waited this long in this market.  Transportation eats up a huge amount of oil, especially things like ships, trains, tractor trailers and planes.  And to be honest, any help is much needed help for these behemoths.  Japan has its solar panels, China is working on solar sails for its cargo ships, and tons of people in America are calling for more efficient big rigs.  Now we just need to press innovation ahead faster.

via Crunch Gear

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