Skip to main content Site Map
ROP26 Hybrid Up Close

Hornblower Hybrid

The Hornblower Hybrid made its official debut in December 2008. The 64-foot hybrid, carrying up to 149 passengers, is the largest of any hybrid ferryboat in the world, making it a prototype that others in the ferry transportation industry can follow. It uses two ten-foot-tall 1,500-Watt wind turbines and a 1.5 KW solar array to power all house loads. The 400hp electric motors are powered by a 320 KW generator and a 380V battery pack that supplements the clean Tier 2 marine diesel engines. Combining these technologies we are able to greatly reduce our fuel consumption and overall emissions.

Energy and fuel savings

  • We built the Hornblower Hybrid by reusing another boat. In doing so, we saved more than 735,000 KWh of electricity in the construction and retrofit of the vessel. That is the equivalent of taking more than 60 U.S. homes off the grid for an entire year!
  • Instead of idling at the dock or burning diesel to keep the lights on (a standard practice in the industry) the Hornblower Hybrid switches from diesel power to battery mode to save fuel and reduce emissions. The Hornblower Hybrid by itself reduces our annual diesel consumption by more than 29,000 gallons! That is equivalent to taking 58 cars off the road permanently or planting 90 acres of trees. The hybrid boat uses approximately six gallons of diesel fuel per hour, compared to 30 gallons per hour used by a conventional ferryboat.

Hydrogen Hybrid Showcase

American Innovation

In late spring 2010, Hornblower Advanced Technologies, a division of Hornblower Yachts, Inc, will introduce the world's first hydrogen-powered hybrid passenger ferry. Created in the spirit of exploration and innovation, the Hydrogen Hybrid will be a 178-foot long, 600-passenger vessel that will ferry passengers to and from the Statue of Liberty National Monument and Ellis Island.

How Power Moves Us

The Hydrogen Hybrid will use hydrogen fuel cells for propulsion energy and solar, wind and off-the-grid electricity to power a portion of the vessel's house system, which includes lights, audio and video systems and the navigational and communications equipment.

Fuel Cell Technology

Hydrogen fuel cells use compressed hydrogen to create energy needed to power generators, which in turn power the electric motors. Hydrogen fuel cells have been used on municipal transit systems and are currently being tested in the automobile industry.

Hydrogen Diagram

Green interior

  • Carpet - contains Everset Fibers made from post-consumer recycled materials and is also recyclable.
  • Countertops - indoor and outdoor bars are made from pieces of recycled glass by Vetrazzo, Inc.
  • Lights - the boat is fully equipped with an LED lighting system.
  • Interior signage - printed on Plyboo, a Forest Service certified product made from 100% renewable materials.
  • All interior modifications meet the United States Green Building Council's LEED criteria for recycled content.

Hybrid Ferry in the News!

Hybrid boat in water