Solar Sal 44 rendering
KINGSTON – The first commercial solar-powered tour boat is under construction at the Hudson River Maritime Museum in Kingston.
Preliminary work began last week on the Solar Sal 44, a 45-foot-long craft, that, when completed will accommodate 31 passengers, a captain and one to two crew members.
John O’Donovan of Belfast, Maine, is the project manager.
“I think the hope is that it is going to be an example of what can be done with where we’ve gotten with technology and batteries and motors,” O’Donovan said. “One of the neat things about this boat is that it is electric but it is running off of an electric outboard motor. You can actually swap out what would have been a convention gasoline outboard for an electric outboard these days. It keeps the systems end of it really simple.”
Solar Sal 44, which is expected to be launched in July, was conceived
by David Borton, president of Sustainable Energy Systems and a Coast Guard-certified
Inland Master and Physics PhD.