The Dahu, a hydrogen-powered solar boat to cross Lake Geneva

Dahu hydrogen solar boat Switzerland
The Dahu, a hydrogen-powered solar boat to cross Lake Geneva

The Swiss Solar Boat team, supported by EPFL and a number of partners including GreenGT, wants to cross Lake Geneva between Lausanne and Evian using green hydrogen.

A strange name for a boat. It has been named Dahu, in tribute to the Alpine region where it was born. The name refers to a legendary animal similar to the ibex, which is said to live in the Swiss Alps. Legend says that it has shorter legs on one side than on the other, enabling it to move around the steep mountain slopes. For Swiss Solar Boat*, the name of this creature was a perfect match for the boat’s asymmetrical design. Which is based on a Polynesian prao.

A future boat in 2025

The team has set itself the goal of developing a new hydrogen-solar hybrid boat by 2025. Starting this year, the plan is to install a hydrogen module (a fuel cell used as a 2 kW range extender) in the Dahu, which will serve as a test platform for the future boat. The most important news is the planned crossing of Lake Geneva between Lausanne and Evian. Not a random choice, given that the route accounts for 40% of traffic on the lake.

A LinkedIn post explains how the crossing is being prepared. On Instagram, Swiss Solar Boat writes that “something fantastic is coming up in May”. In terms of next steps, the website mentions that the future boat will be assembled in January 2025, will take part in the Monaco Energy Boat Challenge in July, and is aiming for a record in 2026. The lake is on fire!

*The structure was created in 2018 and is supported by the EPFL as an association. It has taken part in several competitions.

To stay up to date with the latest hydrogen-related news and events in Switzerland click here

Article written by Laurent Meillaud and translated by Mariem Ben Tili

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About the author

Laurent Meillaud

Laurent Meillaud

Freelance automotive journalist and consultant, author as well, focused on technologies and new trends for more than 30 years, convinced that hydrogen is one of the energies for the future.

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