Yanmar shows off hydrogen fuel-cell boat

Japanese machinery maker Yanmar Holdings has been developing a boat using hydrogen - a carbon-free energy source - as fuel. Now the Osaka-based company has given the media a first chance to see how it performs on the water.

The 8-ton cruiser with a hydrogen fuel cell made a 30-minute demonstration trip in Osaka Bay on Tuesday.

Yanmar is using technology provided by Toyota Motor. It is conducting trials before fitting the system in larger vessels.

Yanmar officials say the hydrogen fueling the boat is the world's most compressed for use in vessels. They say their fuel-cell system reduces sound and vibrations, and ensures smooth acceleration.
Hirose Masaru, a director of Yanmar Power Technology, said the company hopes to make its fuel-cell vessel available as the time is coming when hydrogen is expected to be the main energy source.

Yanmar plans to put the power unit on sale in two years.