Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Wednesday, December 25, 2019

Washington also runs the second-largest ferry system in the world, so switching from diesel to batteries in the early part of a trend toward electrification in shipping is vital to set better standards in marine shipping. All the more helpful considering how large system is.

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I like this, though I would keep one generator Diesel, just incase one of the islands power goes out.

Definitely something to watch for in the future.

#1 | Posted by AndreaMackris at 2019-12-25 01:09 PM | Reply

As someone that frequents the WSF, I say good!

#2 | Posted by aborted_monson at 2019-12-25 02:07 PM | Reply

Harbour Air is testing electric planes as well. The PNW is leading the transition to green.

Ferries are a good first use case as the trips are short and they can recharge during loading, also battery weight isn't an issue. I wonder if they will use those liquid flow batteries.

I expect the nerds will come up with tech to provide green energy that can support increased energy use for improved lifestyles. We can have jet travel and cars without baking the planet, with a side benefit of creating tons of jobs to offset automation losses.

#3 | Posted by bored at 2019-12-25 03:18 PM | Reply

Really awesome news that I probably wouldn't have stumbled upon if it weren't for the retort. Thanks for sharing, Bored.

#4 | Posted by GOnoles92 at 2019-12-25 05:23 PM | Reply

#2 username checks out

#5 | Posted by snoofy at 2019-12-26 02:56 AM | Reply

Harbour Air is testing electric planes as well.

#3 | POSTED BY BORED AT 2019-12-25 03:18 PM | FLAG:

Carbon neutral since 2007. They buy a lot of indlug I mean offsets.

What flew was the MagniX converted DHC-2. In a 5-6 passenger aircraft, the li-on batteries took up the passenger cabin, it only gets 15 minutes flight time with a 25 minute reserve, and it's at max gross weight. It's a legendary 1940s design, originally equipped with radial engines then PT6 turbine coversions.

Where you can make it cost effective, assuming a miraculous upgrade in battery power densities to make routes viable, would be in the overhaul costs. A Turbo Beaver PT6 overhaul runs $500k every 3,600 hours. The radial beavers, you're looking at $35,000 at least, every 1000 hours or so.

#6 | Posted by sitzkrieg at 2019-12-26 12:17 PM | Reply

$6 A lot of the frequent flights in the San Juan island area are less than 30 minutes.

Do you think a methanol fuel cell would have better energy density?

#7 | Posted by bored at 2019-12-26 01:02 PM | Reply

Methanol? No clue. The HY4 flew on hydrogen fuel cells and small batteries for takeoff power. Technically it was a 4 person passenger aircraft. It was like twin gliders with a center motor pod. It could do around 300 miles in range at gross weight. That was 2016. Boeing flew a 2 person fuel cell light aircraft in 2008, it could just barely hold level flight.

There was a Boeing UAV, it's in the Smithsonian now, that used Ford engines converted to run on liquid hydrogen. It was a long endurance demonstrator, but those are high altitude gliders that use tiny amounts of power in cruise compared to hauling people.

#8 | Posted by sitzkrieg at 2019-12-26 01:41 PM | Reply

My question is will the electric ferries be any less disruptive for aquatic life. Or is this limited to just producing less CO2. Ferries already have to run slow in spots because of the ridiculous amount of wake.

Perhaps they should just build the ------- bridge to Bainbridge Island already.

#9 | Posted by snoofy at 2019-12-26 02:38 PM | Reply

Our navy has been doing that since the 60s.

#10 | Posted by Sniper at 2019-12-26 04:22 PM | Reply

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"My question is will the electric ferries be any less disruptive for aquatic life."

Probably yes. Ships use the ocean or river water to cool the engines and when that water flows back into the river its a lot warmer, obviously, but its also filled a bit with oil and other detritus from the combustion process. While electric motors and batteries need cooling as well, the temperatures are a lot less and of course the oil and other detritus from the combustion process will be missing.

#11 | Posted by prius04 at 2019-12-26 07:59 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

Perhaps they should just build the ------- bridge to Bainbridge Island already.
#9 | POSTED BY SNOOFY

There is a whole ferry system ...??

My question is will the electric ferries be any less disruptive for aquatic life.

My guess is worse ... they run quieter .... the sounds/pressure allows the larger aquatic life to avoid.

The silence might be an issue, much like wind mills, or Tesla's in parking lots.

Ferries already have to run slow in spots because of the ridiculous amount of wake.

Thats a human issue, not aquatic AFAIK.

#12 | Posted by AndreaMackris at 2019-12-26 08:29 PM | Reply

"We demand that they install coal fired steam engines on all of them and pour diesel straight into the water while they are docked over night because we are fkkking stupid."

-- you know who

#13 | Posted by MrSilenceDogood at 2019-12-26 10:02 PM | Reply

Just a thought/question: what is the environmental costs of mining and manufacturing a massive bank of batteries that can move such mass as a ferry. Also, how long till need to be replaced and environmental cost of of disposal.

My experience with deep cycle marine batteries ['91 to '02]: on 34' sloop had two banks of two 105ah batteries [four total] and had to replace about every five years. I am sure newer types may last a little longer, but the questions remain the same, especially with the very massive ones needed for a ferry.

#14 | Posted by MSgt at 2019-12-26 11:55 PM | Reply

A lot of the locals appreciate that the ferry toll keeps out some of the riff raff.

#15 | Posted by bored at 2019-12-26 11:56 PM | Reply

#14 Batteries are recycled. I suspect ICE maintenance costs are higher than electric.

#16 | Posted by bored at 2019-12-27 12:00 AM | Reply

* some types of batteries are recycled. We're awesome at reclaiming lead, we get 99%. These aren't lead. This is lithium. Most e-waste recycling just ships it overseas to be burnt in open air pits, particularly LiPo batteries. LiON batteries don't even really try to extract the lithium back out, it's only done on a very small scale. Recycling lithium from batteries costs 5x more than mining.

By electric you mean pure battery I take it. ICE maintenance depends on fuel. A marine gas engine, 1500 hours average. This is why you see a raise in electric adoption in yacht dinghies. They're going over to Torqeedo setups. It's only on the dinghies though. A marine diesel engine on the other hand has a long life span, you get 5,000 hours. It's pretty damn good. You're going to have the swap the batteries in 5 to 8 years, and it's going to be far more expensive than a diesel overhaul.

Diesel-electric has been around for a long time. Massive ships use equally massive electric engine pods, but the power comes from a setup similar to a train, with a diesel engine the size of a 5 story building or bigger, makes the power the motor pods consume. It's getting slightly more popular in smaller power boats and yachts as the systems become more affordable.

#17 | Posted by sitzkrieg at 2019-12-27 09:51 AM | Reply

"We demand that they install coal fired steam engines on all of them and pour diesel straight into the water while they are docked over night because we are fkkking stupid."

-- you know who

#13 | Posted by MrSilenceDogood

you know who. Yes, mrs sily good

#18 | Posted by Sniper at 2019-12-27 12:22 PM | Reply

Ewaste like lithium currently tends to go overseas because getting those metals out of a tiny phone battery is expensive.

But right now there are waiting lines for lithium car batteries. Because of their size and value, they would never go overseas.

Some of the anti battery tech comments posted in this thread have been totally debunked years ago. The BEV haters continue to spout nonsense from 15 years ago.

#19 | Posted by prius04 at 2019-12-27 06:13 PM | Reply

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