The 9th edition of the Monaco Energy Boat Challenge (MEBC) is on this week, the biggest event yet, with 38 teams from 21 countries showcasing the latest non-fossil fuel boat propulsion technologies in a competitive but cooperative atmosphere. They are all united in their goal to reduce carbon emissions from boating and yachting.
The first edition of the event was deemed the Monaco Solar Boat Challenge, with the focus almost exclusively on boats using solar panels as their source of energy. The breadth of technologies has been expanded each year, reflected in the name Energy Boat Challenge, introduced in 2020.
The 38 teams at the 2022 gathering will compete and exhibit in three classes: Solar Class, Energy Class and Open Sea Class. The Solar Class and Energy Class boats will compete in Slalom, Endurance and Championship Races. The Open Sea Class will be providing demonstrations and will compete in a 16 Nautical Mile event and separate Endurance competition. The races take place in the waters just outside the Monaco harbour, with the exact length being determined on the day with consideration of water and weather conditions.
Friday July 8
Endurance Race (EnergyClass & Solar Class)
16nM Speed Trial (Open Sea Trials)
14:00 am CEST
15:00 am CEST
YCM Speed Record
Saturday July 9
Slalom Race (EnergyClass & Solar Class)
Endurance Trial (Open Sea Class)
One of the most important elements of the MEBC is the TechTalk program where each of the teams outlines the development process of their boat, provides technical data and answers questions from other participants and observers. The talks can be seen on the MEBC site or on YouTube and provide great information and insight about the present and future of electric and hydrogen boating.
There is also a Hydrogen Round Table that will bring together government and institutional
stakeholders with international hydrogen project developers to assess where the technology stands today and discuss hydrogen regulations in the maritime sector.
The entire event is organized by the Yacht Club de Monaco (YCM), in collaboration with the International Powerboating Federation (UIM) and Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation (FPA2). The YCM and FPA2 are widely recognized as the boating and yachting world’s leaders in promoting non fossil fuel marine propulsion and protection of water habitat.
Major sponsors of the Monaco Energy Boat Challenge include Credit Suisse, BMW, Oceanco, Feretti Group, SBM Offshore, Jutheau Husson, EODev, SYBAss and the Société Nautique de Monaco and the SeaIndex Superyacht Eco Association.
Below is an overview of the teams and races. Full information can be found on the MEBC website.
Monaco Energy Boat Challenge
The exact length and number of gates for the slalom course will be determined according to wind and weather conditions. Boats are timed individually from a running start. The winner in each Class will be the boat completing the course in the quickest time, with a 10 second penalty added for every buoy missed. In case of a tie, the winner will be the boat with the fewest penalties.
Boats compete over a closed course of 2 nautical miles maximum for a duration of 3 hours that may be shortened if conditions demand. The boats start in a mass fleet but a boat may start at any time during the race. Drivers can changed during the race, but boats must return to the paddocks in the harbour. The winner of each Class will be the boat completing the most number of laps in the set time.
Boats will compete on a standard power-boat match-race course, two by two per Class from a standstill start. The seeding will be established based on the Qualifying Race results.
The three races count towards the final ranking of the MEBC with equal weighting. In each race points will be awarded according to position: 1st – 400 points, 2nd – 300, 3rd – 225, 4th – 169 5th – 127 and decreasing to 1 point for 20th place finish. Results of the YCM Speed Record are not counted in the overall ranking.
Energy Class Teams
In the Energy Class the Yacht Club de Monaco which supplies each team with the same hull design. The challenge for students, working with industry partners, is to design the most powerful and durable propulsion system using a clean energy source of their choice, from a given quantity of energy.
There are university teams as well as teams from commercial enterprises.
BOAT SPECIFICATIONS: Length: 5m – Beam: 2.5m – Height: 0.45m – Displacement: 250kg
Energy Class Student Teams
- CAIMAN ENSTA: ENSTA Paris (École nationale supérieure de techniques avancées), France
- EXOCET – Polytechnique Montreal, Canada
- HAINAN TEAM – Marine Intelligent Equipment Laboratory of Hainan University, China
- HYDRONE ITS TEAM: Institute Technology of Sepuluh Nopember, Indonesia
- HYDROS TEAM: Universitas Indonesia, Indonesia
- HYDROVINCI: ESILV – Ecole Supérieure d’Ingénieurs Léonard de Vinci, Paris, France
- MINES ENERGY CHALLENGE: Ecole de Mines de Paris, France
- NAYLAMPUNI TEAM – Universidad Nacional de Ingeniera – Peru
- OCEANOS – National Technical University of Athens, Greece
- PHYSIS PEB – Politecnico di Milano, Italy
- RIT DUBAI SAILING TIGERS – RIT Dubai (Rochester Institute of Technology Dubai), UAE
- SEA SAKTHI – Kumaraguru College of Technology, India
- TECNICO SOLAR BOAT – Institut Supérieur Technique, Portugal
- UNIBOAT – ARGONAUTS: Alma Mater Studiorum, Università di Bologna, Italy
- CAPGEMINI ENGINEERING
- SBM OFFSHORE E-RACING
Solar Class Teams
The Solar Class is the ‘elder statesperson’ of the event, there since the beginning, but the technology, speed and range of the boats has improved by leaps and bounds over the past decade. The class is still dominated by boats from the Netherlands, where the Solar Sport One organization is headquartered and sanctions races in the country for university and high school teams.
Solar Class Student Teams
- ADRIA HYDROFOIL: Association of Applied Technical Science, Croatia
- AGH SOLAR BOAT TEAM: AGH University of Science and Technology – Krakow Poland
- BME SOLAR BOAT TEAM: Budapest University of Technology and Economics
- CLEAN MOBILITY TEAM SOLAR: University of Applied Sciences, Netherlands
- HAN SOLARBOAT: HAN University of Applied Sciences – Netherlands
- ITS MARINE SOLAR BOAT TEAM: Institut Teknologi Sepuluh Nopember – Indonesia
- SIYAHAMBA SOLAR BOAT TEAM: Durban University of Technology, South Africa
- SOLAR BOAT TWENTE: University of Twente, Netherlands
- SWISS SOLAR BOAT: École Polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne, Switzerland
- TECNICO SOLAR BOAT – Portugal Institut Supérieur Technique, Portugal
- UANTWERPEN SOLAR BOAT TEAM: University of Antwerp, Belgium
- VHL-AERES ZONNEBOOTTEAM: Hogeschool Van Hall Larenstein and Aeres: Netherlands
- BVWHISPERPOWER SOLAR TEAM: Whisperpower Low Emission Solutions
- SUNFLARE TEAM: Veolia Group – Water, Waste and Energy
Open Sea Class Exhibitors and Participants
This class, formerly known as the Offshore Class and mainly open to vessels already on the market or about to enter it, includes a 16 nautical mile coastal course to Ventimiglia in Italy from Monaco, a distance of 16nm (29.6km). The Endurance Race challenges the autonomy of the boats.
Open Sea Class Exhibitors and Participants
- AS LABRUNA – Italian company specializing in three different business units: Marine, Power and Loading
- E’DYN – Established by the company Podkriznik d.o.o., E’dyn is the short name for Electric Dynamic Nautics. Two time winner of the Venice e-Regatta
- EH2P: Participants in the Monacotech Startup Program focussing on Electric, Hybrid and Hydrogen powertrains
- TU DELFT HYDRO MOTION TEAM – Team of 25 students from different study backgrounds from Technical University Delft, Netherlands
- VILLA d’ESTE – famous Lae Como resort presents an electric boat model, designed for day cruises and sports use, inspired by the runabouts of the 60s, with a contemporary design by Studio Frers.
- VITA YACHTS – Manufacturer of the Vita LION and Vita SEAL zero emission yachts with high-performance electric powertrains
- X SHORE – Swedish electric boat manufacturer producing fully electric yacht tenders.
Exciting things are happening every day in electric boats and boating.
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