Ellis Island via the Sun | Solar Powered Ferry

solarferry new york 01 Ellis Island via the Sun | Solar Powered Ferry

What could be better than seeing the Statue of Liberty in person? How about traveling there in a noiseless and fumeless boat?

That’s exactly how the ride will be when New York City’s new solar and wind powered hybrid ferry is operating service. Completely petroleum-free, the ferry itself is called “Miss Statue of Liberty” and is being made in partnership with Solar Sailor of Australia. When running, the ferry uses a sail covered in solar panels that collects energy from the sun and wind. (If the vessel goes over 6 knots, a diesel main propulsion engine cuts in.) This 600 passenger, 115 foot trimaran ferry can also be plugged in and the batteries recharged.

Solar Sailor’s founder, Robert Dane, and Circle Line (the ferry operator that provides service to the Statue of Liberty) both agree that the ferry is a beautiful ship that has enormous potential to make people more aware of the environment. Said to cost between $2-3 million dollars more than a conventional ferry, Circle Line believes cutting fuel usage by about a third each year will make it worthwhile financially.

solarferry new york 02 Ellis Island via the Sun | Solar Powered Ferry

While ferry operators in San Francisco, Hong Kong, Germany and Shanghai have inquired about the green ferry, Sydney’s already got one in their harbor and New York’s is set to sail in 2008.

From there it’ll be a race to see who gets one next…

  • http://www.thinkmag.net Jacqueline

    I rode the ferry when I visited New York as a child. Can't wait to take another spin now, this is swish and energy efficient.

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