Charlotte Water is running a renewable diesel pilot project, operating 34 diesel vehicles on 100 percent renewable fuel…
August 16, 2019 | The Waterways Journal Weekly
While green issues have played their part, vessel owners have chosen diesel-electric solutions for their superior fuel economy, system redundancy and operational flexibility, especially in the passenger ferry and offshore supply vessel market. Those same attributes have attracted the attention of U.S. inland waterway operators.
Diesel-electric propulsion is a mature and proven technology refined over decades for ease of installation, operational flexibility and fuel efficiency. The ETB concept also offers greater maneuverability and superior safety over conventional alternatives. For those owners looking to build a boat that will last the test of time over the next 30 – 50 years, diesel-electric systems allow for ease of upgrade for technologies that are just entering the market like batteries and alternative fuels such as hydrogen fuel cells.
The inland waterway sector has only begun to adopt diesel-electric systems, but given the benefits that accrue to ETB owners and operators, it is likely that diesel-electric propulsion will be the system of choice going forward.