Waterborne transport still offers an enormous potential for pollution reduction and energy efficiency gains. The reduction of pollutant and greenhouse gas emissions is far removed from the progress made in road transport, particularly in the category of older, small to medium-size vessels which make up a large proportion of intra-European waterborne transport, including inland navigation.
The scope of the FORCE project is to evaluate the technical and commercial feasibility of a new hybrid marine propulsion system, aimed at combining the conventional mechanical powertrain with a commercially affordable and technically effective electric drive train, which is able to increase the overall efficiency of outboards below 50 kW power for both professional and leisure utilization, allowing zero emission navigation in sensitive areas as for instance near to the coasts, protected areas, marinas or inland waters.
The objectives of the FORCE project are very ambitious and innovative, since an outboard able to combine conventional with electrical drive (constituting in fact a hybrid propulsion system) does not exist yet in the market.
The technical and commercial feasibility study will be developed verifying the technological/practical as well as the economic viability of the proposed innovative propulsion system and will include an elaborated business plan.