The mission

Test

Test and optimize the technologies on board our floating laboratory in extreme environments. Field experience to enable their large-scale application.

Inspire

By seeking sustainable solutions wherever they are and putting them into images through exclusive audio-visual content.

Odyssey for the Future

Energy Observer it’s also an odyssey around the world on the search for innovative solutions for the environment. 6 years, 50 countries, and 101 stopovers, to go and meet people who are designing tomorrow's future, and to prove that a cleaner world is possible.

More than a vessel, Energy Observer is a media platform providing positive and inspiring content in favor of innovative solutions.

The ecological transition needs to be seen as a promise for a better world. Through this exclusive Odyssey, we want to make people dream, to raise awareness, to prove that humans can live in harmony with nature and that the fight against global warming can open some doors to a new economic expansion.

Jérôme Delafosse,
Expedition leader of Energy Observer

The Odyssey

6 years, 50 countries, and 101 ports of call around the world
the odyssey has begun

17973 nautical miles covered
25 visited countries

48 stopovers made

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The vessel

Energy Observer is the first hydrogen vessel, aiming for the energy autonomy, with zero greenhouse gas emissions or fine particles. This former race boat, an outstanding competitor has been fully transformed into a vessel of the future, powered by electric propulsion thanks to a mix of renewable energies and a hydrogen production system that produces carbon-free hydrogen on board using seawater.

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1. HYDROGEN CHAIN
DESALINATION SYSTEM
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2. HYDROGEN CHAIN
Electrolyser
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3. HYDROGEN CHAIN
Compressor
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4. HYDROGEN CHAIN
Hydrogen storage
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5. HYDROGEN CHAIN
Fuel cell
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6. ENERGY PRODUCTION
Photovoltaic panels
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7. ENERGY PRODUCTION
The Oceanwings
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8. ENERGY PRODUCTION
Hydrogenation
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9. DOUBLE STORAGE
Batteries
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10. DOUBLE STORAGE
Hydrogen storage
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11. ELECTRIC PROPULSION
EMS (Electonic Management system)
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Hydrogen

The energy revolution on the way

Greenhouse gas emissions are due to the intensive exploitation of fossil fuels, which has enabled the 1st and 2nd revolutions in industry. Each of them has its own energies and infrastructures.

Making the 3rd industrial revolution possible: that of renewable energies and hydrogen.

With the advent of new technologies, the Internet and the necessary deployment of renewable energies, the economist Jeremy Rifkin has theorized the concept of "3rd industrial revolution", of which the energy autonomy of buildings, thanks to renewable energies and hydrogen, is one of the pillars.

Our partners

We have committed and motivated partners, who wish to change the rules of the game in regards to internal and external energy transition.
For this, our goal is to build concrete and sustainable relationships with each one of them, in order to create added value and to give meaning to our actions.
Our vision of partnership is, above all, human and based on shared requirements of trust, transparency, and integrity.

Join us on board

Energy Observer continues to seek financial, institutional, media, and scientific partners.

Contact us   Media contact
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1. The Mission

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2017 - 2022
An Odyssey for the Future on board the first hydrogen vessel around the world

Our mission

  • 01

    To test, experience, and optimise the embarked technologies in extreme environments in order to later enable their implementation on land.

  • 02

    To locate sustainable solutions, and to participate in their deployment.

  • 03

    To prove to the general public, local communities, and businesses that energy transition is possible.

Energy Observer is the first vessel in the world capable of producing its own hydrogen on board, from seawater and without greenhouse gas emissions or fine particles, thanks to the coupling of renewable energies... A human and technological challenge to prove that ecological transition is possible.

Testing these technologies outside of laboratories...

More than just a boat, Energy Observer is the laboratory of technologies for the energies of the future, tested in extreme conditions. Because demonstrating the efficiency and performance of our complete hydrogen chain in a hostile marine environment is a fortiori validating its application in a terrestrial environment, and allowing its development in other large-scale applications, maritime or terrestrial, mobile or stationary.

A XXI century Calypso, at the service of solutions

While most of the great historical expeditions aimed at conquering the territories and appropriating their richness, Energy Observer carries out an expedition of a new kind: leaving to discover people and share knowledge.

Six years, 50 countries, 101 ports of call, in order to raise awareness among the general public on the major themes of ecological transition, including renewable energies, biodiversity, mobility and the circular economy, starting from meeting the pioneers of tomorrow's world.

An Odyssey to connect solutions to problems, value rather than denounce, encourage instead of guilt, thanks to the production of a documentary series of 8 episodes, whose season 1 will be broadcast on Planète+ in 2018.

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Prove that ecological transition is possible

Energy Observer's educational mission is to raise awareness of one of the major challenges of the 21st century: combating global warming.

General public, schools, heads of state and government, representatives of local authorities, media, companies, public figures... In our itinerant village all around the world, through the production of documentary content, and on board Energy Observer, we want to educate and above all bring together a community committed to the Planet.

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Follow the project's latest news

Follow the evolution of the project and the latest news, by signing up for our newsletter, and following us on social media.

3. The Vessel

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The vessel

Built in Canada in 1983 by the naval architect Nigel Irens, under the supervision of the navigator Mike Birth, it is a maxi catamaran which has left its mark on the evolution of multi-hull boats. Originally 24.38 meters long, it has been lengthened four times and today measures 30.5 meters long by 12.80 meters wide.

A legendary boat, transformed into a vessel of the future

After an outstanding racing career under the names of Formule TAG, Tag Heuer, Enza New Zealand, Royal & SunAlliance, Team Legato, or Daedalus, this legendary boat has a new life today under the name of Energy Observer, and is paving a new way, the one of sailing autonomously powered by hydrogen.
Now equipped with a revolutionary energy architecture, Energy Observer is the first vessel in the world, able to produce its hydrogen from seawater, thanks to renewable energies. More than a boat, Energy Observer is a model for energy networks of the future: digitized, decarbonized and decentralized.
A veritable, experimental laboratory with a goal of energy autonomy, each component of this model is tested and optimized under extreme conditions, in order to be able to eventually allow its application in a terrestrial environment.

Living Spaces

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Technical areas

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4. Hydrogen

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What is hydrogen?

It is the chemical element of atomic number 1, the first of Mendeleev's painting and the most abundant in the universe: 75% by mass and 92% by number of atoms.

It occurs very rarely in its natural state because it is generally combined with other atoms: it is found in water, oil or natural gas. Hydrogen is not a primary energy source but a secondary chemical energy. This is why it is first considered as an energy carrier (which transports energy).

I believe that water will one day be used as a fuel, that the hydrogen and oxygen it contains, used alone or simultaneously, will provide an inexhaustible source of heat and light of an intensity that coal cannot have.

This premonition dates back to 1874, in Jules Verne's novel "L'Île mystérieuse". Today, what is wrongly called the "water engine" is no longer quite a writer's dream. Of course, it is not yet a question of pouring water into its reservoir, but thanks to dihydrogen, produced from water and emitting only water, fiction is becoming a reality.

How to produce it?

To separate hydrogen from the elements with which it is naturally associated, a source of hydrogen and an energy source are required to enable a chemical process.
Hydrogen can thus be produced by:

  • Natural gas vaporization
  • Gasification and pyrolysis of biomass
  • Thermochemical or photochemical decomposition of water
  • Organic production from algae or bacteria
  • Water electrolysis

Currently in the world, 95% of hydrogen is produced from fossil fuels. The challenge: to develop clean production from water electrolysis using renewable energies. This is called "green" hydrogen.

The advantages of hydrogen

  1. It is inexhaustible

    On land, the most abundant source of hydrogen is water. During electrolysis and electrochemical conversion processes via the fuel cell, the only releases are oxygen and water vapour. Its availability is therefore infinite.

  2. He's full of energy

    Although its density is very low, which means that it must be compressed or liquefied, hydrogen represents an exceptional energy density!
    • 4.1kg of coal
    • 2.8kg of gasoline
    • 2.4kg of natural gas
    • 1kg of hydrogen

    In other words, 1k of hydrogen releases :
    • 4.1x more energy than 1kg of coal
    • 2.8x more than 1kg of gasoline
    • 2.4x more than 1kg of natural gas

  3. It is the best ally of renewable energies

    Hydrogen makes it possible to store surplus renewable energy in the long term so that it can be reused later.

  4. It is lightweight

    Despite a lower theoretical efficiency than battery storage, hydrogen storage is up to 10 times lighter for mobility. This light weight saves a lot of energy.

  5. It is clean and quiet

    In particular in the field of transport, it emits neither greenhouse gases nor pollutants when it comes from renewable sources. Combined with electromobility, it also has the advantage of being very quiet.

  6. It recharges quickly

    Filling up with hydrogen takes only a few minutes compared to several hours for its battery equivalent. A major asset for the electric mobility of tomorrow.

5. The Team

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The leaders of the expedition

VICTORIEN ERUSSARD

OFFSHORE RACER - MULTITASK OFFICER IN THE MERCHANT NAVY CAPTAIN AND CO-LEADER OF THE EXPEDITION SAS ENERGY OBSERVER’S PRESIDENT

  • 10 years as on offshore racer
  • 1 Route du Rhum
  • 4 Transat Jacques Vabre
  • 3 podiums over 6 transatlantic races
  • 3 F-18 French championships titles
  • 1 Transat Quebec-Saint-Malo… without rudder
  • 1 year expedition in the south pole

Victorien was born in Saint-Malo, the year after the first Route du Rhum. 26 years later, he was on the starting line of the legendary race aboard the trimaran Laiterie de Saint Malo. It was his very first solo ocean race, aboard an old 60 feet trimaran that he had updated himself with great willpower and a grinder…

Although he had never spent a single night at sea before this crossing, he finished on the podium.
In parallel to building a track record which pushed him among the elites of his field, Victorien deepened his knowledge of the sea by pursuing his studies as a multitask officer in the merchant navy. In 2007, he raced in his first Transat Jacques Vabre, alongside Frédéric Dahirel, sixteen years his elder, and finished second.

Starting in 2011, Victorien decided to use his competitive appetite towards the fight against multiple sclerosis. For that project, he built from scratch the “Défi Voile Solidaires en Peloton” in favor of the ARSEP foundation with his friend Thibaut Vauchel-Camus. This adventure led them to the Class40 championship title and to a fourth place in his fourth Transat Jacques Vabre in 2015.

His desire to serve a cause finally prevailed over the thrill of the competition. Hence the reason he agreed in 2013 to join Frédéric Dahirel in the construction of a solar-powered catamaran, that become, thanks to a perfect blend of spontaneity and experience, the first experimental and self-sufficient energy vessel powered by a complete hydrogen production chain coupled to renewable energies.

“Victorien has the freshness and spontaneity of a teenager, combined with the insight of a man of experience. What surprised me, the first time I met him, was that he didn’t seem to fear anything.”

Nicolas Hulot

JÉRÔME DELAFOSSE

EXPLORER - FILMMAKER CO-LEADER OF THE EXPEDITION MEMBER OF THE EXECUTIVE BOARD

  • 23 years of ocean exploration
  • 20 000 hours under
  • 10 years of broadcasting on Canal+
  • 1 sunken palace of Cleopatra discov
  • 800 dives with the sharks
  • 2 novels and 500 000 copies sold

Everything starts in Saint-Malo for Jérôme. Hours spent sailing, diving, and mostly learning from the great adventurers, explorers, and privateers. At twelve he discovers the documentaries of Cousteau’s team… this is a revelation. Jerôme decides that when he grows up, he will also explore the oceans just like his heroes.
Professional diver, press and expedition photographer, documentary filmmaker, and author of novels sold worldwide. In 2006, he becomes one of the iconic figures of Les Nouveaux Explorateurs, on Canal+ and Travel Channel, a show in which he travels to legendary oceans and rivers, and meets up with water people in order to discover different cultures and raise public awareness in regard to environmental matters.
After making his childhood dream come true, Jérôme wants to become a fullfledged activist in raising awareness to the necessity of protecting the ocean’s natural and human heritage. Travelling the planet, contributing to its protection, and proposing optimistic and concrete solutions, here lies his new challenge.

5. The Team

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The Energy Observer Team


Victorien Erussard, Founder and Captain
Jérôme Delafosse, Expedition Leader and film Director

Crew members

The sailors
Marin Jarry, fleet manager - Weapons Director
Jean Baptiste Sanchez, Master
David Bunel, Bosco
Serge Erussard, Bosco

Engineers
Hugo Devedeux, Systems Engineer
Roland Reynaud, Systems Engineer
Raymond Mouchel, Multi-purpose Technician
Julien Bonnard, Multi-purpose Technician

The film crew
Amélie Conty, embedded reporter
Antoine Drancey, mediaman
Julien Voigt, Cameraman
Marta Sostres, onboard investigator

Team on shore

Louis-Noël Viviès, Managing Director
Ambroise Delorme, Administrative and Financial Director
Cathy Noguez, Secretary General and Director of External Relations
Laurène Blottière, Communication Director
Anais Toro-Engel, Digital Manager
Nina Le Sceller, Partner and Event Relations Officer
Margaux Prigent, Communication Officer
Gérard Rumen, Event Manager, Management and Logistics
Yann Amice, Meteorologist

Design - Design office

Didier Bouix, CEA-Liten
Sébastien Germe, CEA-Liten
Jean-Philippe Poirot
Cyrille Desmoulins, CEA-Liten
François Sauzede, CEA-Liten
Eric Pinton
Marc Van Peteghem, VPLP
Nicolas Degorce
Nicolas Berthelot
Guy Saillard
Nicolas Sdez

5. The Team

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Our Ambassadors


One man, one woman: one used to the media spotlight, the other to the more private environment offered by laboratory work but both equally committed to Energy Observer and offering both a media and scientific legitimacy to the project.

Today, energy is experiencing a true revolution by integrating an increasingy number of renewable energies with different vectors: electricity, heat, and hydrogen. There are real technical challenges in connecting these fluxes, and it is even more ambitious to try this on a vessel. Therefore, Energy Observer is a foreshadowing of tomorrow's energy networks on earth.

Florence Lambert,
director of the CEA and Energy Observer Ambassador

Energy Observer is more than just a boat; it is a demonstrator and collector of solutions. It designs a future that has already begun. A long-term and evolving project that wishes to create a wave of positive energies

Nicolas Hulot,
Former Minister, founder of the Foundation for Nature and Mankind and Energy Observer Ambassador

2. The Odyssey

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Credits

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Crédits

Photograph Credits

© copyright photo library Energy Observer -
Photos : Patrick AVAVIAN, Leah BALL, Jérémy BIDON, Kadeg BOUCHER, Pierrick CONTIN, Amadea KOSTRZEWA

Presentation Film Credits

Images: Jeremie ELOY, Romain FROGÉ /Wanaii Films, Jean Charles GRANJON/Bonne Pioche, Julien VOIGT, Guillaume LE CORRE
3D images: Kadeg BOUCHER et Quentin CHICHE
Editing: Delphine COHEN
Art Direction and Graphic Design: Cokau lab
Visual Identity: Studio Be-Poles
Music: Demusmaker
Sound mixing: Rodolphe GERVAIS/Studio du faune
Director: Jérôme DELAFOSSE

Website Credits

Design and development: DOUNY

Visual Identity Credits

Visual Identity: Studio Be-Poles

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