Harnessing Solar Power On The Water

This is kinda neat :


By Todd Ceisner
BassFan Editor

Troy Lindner was in the midst of a cross-country drive early last year with his father, iconic fishing personality Al Lindner, when the idea started to take shape in his head.

“We were calling motels trying to find a place where we could plug in the boat to charge our boat batteries,” Troy recalled. “My dad was like, ‘I’ve been dealing with this sort of thing for 40 years.’ That’s when it dawned on me – we have this giant boat floating in the middle of a lake or river and we’re getting blasted by the sun. Why not harvest the power of the sun and put solar panels on the boat?”

The elder Lindner, who knew very little about solar energy, responded with intrigue and words of encouragement.

“If you can figure that out, go for it,” Al said.

When he returned home to southern California, Lindner reached out to solar companies to see if anyone offered anything that could be installed on the deck of a bass boat or possibly on the outboard. It needed to be durable, waterproof and efficient enough to charge 36-volt batteries and an outboard cranking battery.

His search came up empty until he came across Ocean Planet Energy, a Maine-based solar company owned by Bruce Schwab. Schwab tipped him off that there was another individual asking the same questions about solar panels and bass boats.

Schwab put Lindner in contact with Brian Meyer, an Iowa angler with an automotive background. Meyer was already a couple steps ahead of Lindner in the search for a durable and efficient option to utilize the sun’s rays to charge his boat’s batteries. He’d already outfitted his outboard with a small solar panel that allowed him to trickle-charge his cranking battery while on the water.

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