The Principality of Monaco, ever a hub of technological innovation, is gearing up for the largest congregation of sustainable energy enthusiasts. The Monaco Energy Boat Challenge 2023, organized by the Yacht Club de Monaco (YCM), is set to kick off in July, and the anticipation is high.
An Ambitious Confluence
Over 50 units from 23 nations are prepping for this unique event, the heart of which is yachting's energy transition. Registrations are pouring in for the Solar and Energy classes, mainly from engineering students, along with approximately 15 professional entrants ready to showcase their latest sustainable innovations. This includes the inaugural YCM E-Boat Rally from Monaco to Italy's Cala del Forte. The event is also setting an example with its 100% electric press and safety boats, underlining YCM's commitment to a zero-emission goal.
A Forum for Innovation
The Monaco Energy Boat Challenge is not only a showcase of the latest sustainable technology but also a forum for sharing knowledge and ideas. Backed by partners such as the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation, Credit Suisse, BMW, and SBM Offshore, the event includes daily Tech Talks, industry pitches, and a conference focused on research and development in open source. Major players from the yachting industry, like Sanlorenzo, Oceanco, Ferretti, and Monaco Marine shipyards, will also be present.
A Legacy of Technology
Monaco has a long-standing tradition of being a tech incubator, with the first powerboat meetings over a century ago. Today, the Principality, in line with YCM General Secretary Bernard d’Alessandri's statement, seeks to spearhead the environmental transition in the yachting industry through this unique event.
The Sustainability Debate
The discussions on sustainability continue at the Challenge with a half-day conference called "Challenges, Engagement and Adoption," to examine the road ahead and the progress made thus far. The event will also host the 4th Hydrogen Round Table, organised by the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation, the Energy Transition Mission, and the YCM. This will bring together stakeholders from Monaco, France, and international institutions, with hydrogen project developers. The increasing number of hydrogen-related prototypes entering the Challenge each year is a testament to its success.
A Global Gathering
27 teams from 23 countries, including Peru, USA, Canada, India, Turkey, Croatia, Italy, Portugal and more, have completed their registrations, with competitors in the Open Sea Class having until the 1st of June. The Challenge aims to foster interaction between engineering students and industry professionals, promoting opportunities such as the Job Forum, 'Live Career Day', and a new Corporate Mentoring Program.
Innovation on Sea and Shore
One of the unique aspects of the Challenge is the implementation of new technologies in real-life sea challenges. This year, a new feature, the first-ever YCM E-Boat Rally, aims to bring together a record number of builders of electric boats. The event will also introduce the first E-Dock, an eco-designed pontoon, capable of supplying fast and reliable power to over 20 boats simultaneously.
Towards Environmental Goals
Beyond the Challenge, YCM continues its work towards environmental sustainability, with initiatives like installing electric charging stations, purchasing electric tenders, using BTL biofuel, and developing a water recycling system. In the words of YCM President, HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco, “it is imperative that living proof of progress replaces the promises”. The Monaco Energy Boat Challenge is a tangible demonstration of this ethos.