The Sunflower is a hybrid solar-powered boat that uses both solar and wind energy
“Sunflower”, a solar-powered hybrid boat, will soon be launched in Bangladesh by Rahimafrooz Renewable Energy and Chittagong based Taratari Shipyard.
The boat, locally known as kayak, was designed by French-born Bangladeshi Yves Marre, who is also the managing director of Taratari Shipyard.
"For the first time in Bangladesh, a kayak has been equipped with a hybrid system combining the solar and wind energy," Marre told a media briefing, jointly organized by Rahimafrooz and Taratari at Chittagong Press Club on Tuesday afternoon.
"'Sunflower' is capable of running for three days nonstop on a single charge," he said, adding that they plan to introduce the new hybrid boat all across Bangladesh soon.
Marre said: "The boat will be fast, secure and affordable compared to conventional diesel-run engine boats... this environment-friendly boat will be a revolution in the country."
He said the kayak has sailed across Bangladesh from its border with India to Hatiya Island in the Bay of Bengal.
Marre noted that the new boat has been sailing for the last one year along Brahmaputra, Jamuna, Padma and Meghna to examine its potential in Bangladesh.
Shaikh Monowar Ahmad, Head of EV Project of Rahimafrooz Renewable Energy Ltd, briefed reporters about how the boat is powered using solar energy, new technology batteries, and its technical sustainability.
Rivu Dewan, GM of Taratari, also responded to questions on business development.
They said the Sunflower had immense possibilities and can have a positive impact on inland water transport and influence sustainable entrepreneurship and offer employment opportunities.
They said the boat will open a new era of energy saving, energy efficiency and optimization of climate mitigation.
They said they initially plan to launch boats capable of carrying 8-10 people and gradually increase the capacity.