Say you’ve got an island. Getting power around the place could be difficult. But what if you put solar panels on electric boats? And what if you loaded them with batteries? And then, what if you are able to control these boats and have them supply your island power grid from their batteries?
And that’s what Australian researchers are working on. They’ve developed an algorithm to control electric boats, to supply micro power grids for islands. Which, being in the Pacific Ocean, they have loads of.
What would you have used before these electric boats? Old, smelly, diesel generators. Diesels can run for years without significant costs, but they aren’t especially clean unless they’re very modern… which you can predict the ones in use aren’t.
Basically, when a boat is docked, it can collect solar, store it in lithium-ion batteries, and feed power into the grid. When sailing, it can charge its own batteries. And, because they’re boats, they’re portable.
In the event of a natural disaster, you could move the boats to where they can be most effective for recovery and emergency aid.
The algorithm attempts to manage power flows to allow electric boats to provide peak load support to a grid directly after a trip.??More testing is required to make this a widespread thing.