The 100-tonne vessel is using solar, wind, hydrogen and AI-based solutions to circumnavigate the globe
| 21 March 2022
The Swiss experimental vessel Porrima, which is powered solely by renewables, has arrived at Dubai Harbour during a global journey across five continents.
Choosing Dubai Harbour for its second world destination, the solar, wind and hydrogen-powered ship had travelled more than 11,000 kilometres without stopping since departing Osaka, Japan, on December 18, 2021.
Upon arrival at Dubai Harbour, the Porrima berthed at Harbour Marina in front of the Yacht Club building before unveiling a suite of renewable technologies that have been proven on board. It will invite the youth to join the ‘Blue Campus’ to learn the skills and build the talent around the showcased next-generation solutions to sustainable ocean industries and resource preservation.
“We are excited to welcome the Porrima to Dubai Harbour for its third odyssey around the globe,” says Abdulla Binhabtoor, Chief Portfolio Management Officer, Shamal Holding, the company which owns Dubai Harbour. “It is exciting to see how the intersection of technology and sustainability come together to help tackle the environmental challenges that we face today.
“Having just concluded our role as host of the Dubai International Boat Show, we witnessed a wide range of innovative, sustainable marine technology showcased at the show, which is a testament to the UAE’s dedication to promoting and embracing eco-friendly alternatives to protect our oceans. The Porrima brings sustainable mobility to the forefront, and we are committed to accelerating action to preserve a healthy planet for generations to come.”
The journey, which aims to arrive at its destination after a refit with 12 novel technologies in time for the opening of the Expo 2025 Osaka, will see the vessel dock at ports around the world to demonstrate how to tackle problems such as pollution and climate change through the use of commercially viable renewable technologies. The project comes in response to a call to action from the Japan Association for the 2025 World Exposition, which invites initiatives geared towards realising ‘an ideal future society.’
Porrima – named after the Roman goddess of the future – was the first in the world to circumnavigate the globe using only solar energy under its previous name, ‘Planet Solar’. Now, using solar, wind and hydrogen, the 36-metre 100-tonne vessel also utilises artificial intelligence and technologies inspired by nature. Porrima is also the only vessel in the word certified to produce and consume hydrogen on board.
The creator of the enterprise is the Belgian entrepreneur, economist, and author Gunter Pauli. “We need to wake up the entrepreneurs of the future, and I believe Dubai is the right place for this,” he says. “The innovation and adoption of the kind of technologies that we are showcasing on the Porrima will have a fundamental role to play in the realisation of many of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals – and provide a blueprint for creating an ideal future society.”
Having been involved in the invention of technologies in support of sustainable resource use, in 1994, Pauli founded the Tokyo-based Zero Emissions Research and Initiatives think tank at the United Nations University.
The vessel will leave Dubai Harbour on March 31 to commemorate the closing of Expo 2022 and will continue its global voyage.