There was a great study behind Planet Solar’s Tūranor project
a few years ago. They got into some great specifics about the whole idea and practicality of going primarily solar.
From a practical and pragmatic point of view, I am not going to trade
in the reliable diesel
AUXILARY for an electric motor
any time soon.
I did keep a Minn Kota trolling motor
on the stern to convert any excess energy to direct work. Not to mention, it makes a good stern thruster and dink motor
. In order to test a theory that hybrid would be much more practical.
I think I would rather hybrid with a Torqeedo Electric Outboard
and a smaller, more efficient diesel
and add panels where I can as well as wind
generators. And that is only because I have to replace the diesel before we leave anyway.
It seems to make a lot more sense. For day sailing
, why fire up the diesel just to get out of the slip. For racing
, that little bump when you need it (just kidding). For cruising, the safety
of having both. If you ever sat becalmed in the middle of the pacific, you are constantly calculating your fuel
to get through it and that is usually the time, you have excess solar not doing anything.
The future is in a hybrid solution that works for both a day sailor and cruiser and starting to see more of these ideas with the electric motor
behind the diesel and able to both generate (collect) power, but also provide it at the same shaft and prop.