Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is one of the world heritage sites that carry a delicate eco system. The Great Barrier Reef area consists of over 2,900 individual reefs and 900 islands stretching over 2,600 kilometres (1,600 mi) over an area of approximately 344,400 square kilometres (133,000 sq mi).
In order to protect this area, authorities are now building a solar powered boat for patrolling the Great Barrier Reef area.
Dubbed the Catamaran Patrol Vessel (CPV) , this solar powered boat has been designed by a collaborative team between Incat Crowther and Marine Engineering Consultants (MEC). It measures about 24 meters long with an 8.5 meter beam and 1.3 meter draft.
The catamaran will sport extensive solar panels, high R-value insulation, zoned air conditioning and window blinds and shutters so as to reduce the impact of the sun.
Extensive solar energy will be stored in the lithium-ion batteries to reduce the use of diesel generators. These batteries will be charged during the day time by solar power, and will be used at night.
The CPV is also equipped with a six meter and a 4.5 meter RIB (Rigid-hulled Inflatable Boat). According to Queensland’s Department of National Parks and Incat Crowther, this boat will be released early next year.