Solar Sailor Holdings
Solar Sailor Holdings Limited is an Australian company that supplies marine transportation technology. Solar Sailor was founded by Robert Dane in 1999, and the current chairman is Bob Hawke. The company develops and specializes in two forms of technology: hybrid marine power (HMP), and solar sails.
The company licences its technology and intellectual property world wide. The technology is applicable to all types of marine vessels, including commercial ferries, large ships, and recreational vessels. A range of naval drones is being developed for oceanography, surveillance, data gathering, security and military uses, which are autonomous and self-sustaining, and have considerable endurance such that 2 year at-sea periods are anticipated.
Hybrid marine power
Hybrid marine power is the maritime equivalent of hybrid vehicle technology - electric motors which operate in combination with fossil fuel engines. Solar Sailor vessels run on multiple sources of power including solar, wind, stored battery power and fossil fuel (diesel).
Solar sails are pivotally mounted wings, capable of rotation on two axes. They can function as a sail, a solar collector, or both at once. Solar Sails can be hydraulically operated, with both computer optimization and manual control. By rotating to maximise exposure, solar sails can increase ship efficiency by up to 40%.