Alcatraz Launches Sun/Wind Powered Hybrid Boat

One point four million people visit San Francisco’s Alcatraz Island each year, which adds up to a considerable carbon footprint when you factor in all of the gallons of fuel used to power those ferries. To help reduce this environmental impact Alcatraz Cruises recently launched their very own green solution – the Hornblower Hybrid ferry. The multi-hulled hybrid boat uses two wind turbines and a solar array to generate power for its navigation tools, lighting, and even part of its propulsion system.

The Hornblower Hybrid is capable of carrying around 160 passengers from San Francisto to Alcatraz. When the boat is idling or in low propulsion mode it is powered by its batteries, which are charged by its wind turbines and solar panels. Otherwise, the boat runs on Tier 2 marine diesel engines, which the company claims, are cleaner than the standard ones found in these catamarans.

In addition to its energy efficiency, the Hornblower Hybrid meets all the requirements for LEED’s recycled content, including its carpets and the countertops, which are made from recycled vodka bottles. The Hornblower Hybrid recently launched, and Alcatraz Cruises plans to eventually add a second hybrid vehicle to its fleet.

By Jorge Chcapa,, January 20, 2009.


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