Phil Sharp Skipper of OceansLab IMOCA
First hydrogen fuel cell race yacht
The OceansLab IMOCA will exclusively use hydrogen fuel cell technology, thanks to a ‘Hydrogen Power Module’, created and developed by the team at Genevos, where Sharp, who has a passion for renewable energy innovation, is a co-founder.
“IMOCA race boats are the most innovative and extreme of ocean-going vessels. They are an ideal platform to showcase vital clean technologies, such as hydrogen fuel cells, and prove their durability in the harshest of ocean environments.” Says Sharp.
OceansLab will be the first race boat to integrate a hydrogen-electric energy system, technology that is applicable to a vast range of commercial and recreational vessels. The IMOCA’s zero emission energy system will power all on board energy, in addition to propulsion outside of the races.
“Replacing fossil fuel power with renewable energy solutions is an important step forward not only for our sport, but the entire maritime sector. Ultimately, I am sailing to win races, while also proving that by using the latest clean technologies, this can be done with zero emissions,” states Sharp.
As well as hydrogen fuel cell technology, OceansLab will also be demonstrating how other clean innovations such as recyclable composite materials and solar PV, can perform together to create an eco-efficient yacht.
“In order to meet climate change targets we need to start developing zero emission vessels across the entire maritime sector, today. This campaign will be an important benchmark in demonstrating that practical hydrogen solutions now exist that are ready to be embraced at scale.” he concludes.
OceansLab will be competing in the IMOCA Globe series grand slam events including transatlantic races, the Transat Jacques Vabre and Route Rhum, and major round-the-world races, the Vendée Globe and The Ocean Race.
Sharp has achieved over 25 podiums in transatlantic and coastal racing, as well as winning two offshore championships and breaking three World Sailing Speed Records.