World's largest solar-powered concrete boat docks in Daytona

Archimedes is a 50-foot boat that runs on natural energy


DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The world's largest solar-powered concrete boat and its captain docked in Daytona Beach on Thursday.

"My whole thing was to build a never ending gas tank to go cruisin with," said Carter Quillen, captain.

Quillen said it took a little over three years to build the Archimedes, a 50-foot boat that has a diesel engine but runs on nothing but natural energy.

"When we were building this thing, it was $5 a gallon, OK. It basically gets about 5 miles to the gallon, so it's a dollar a mile. So, for every mile I go on electricity, I'm putting a dollar in my pocket," said Quillen.

Quillen said there are other advantages to the solar panels.

"They shade the boat, they can actually fold up and act as a rain catchment system. Solar is an abundant natural resource that Florida has and we should be harvesting it," he said.

That's why ReThink Energy Florida, an organization that promotes renewable energy, teamed up with Quillen, to spread the word on what solar energy can do.

"He's burning less fossil fuels, it's going to put less pollutants in the air, less particulate matter. It's going to help people breathe a little better, so that's a good thing," said Brian Lee, research and policy director of ReThink Energy Florida.

Quillen gave Local 6 a tour of the 650-square-foot living space and said it's comparable to a single wide trailer that floats. He said it's been a comfortable ride so far. He started his trip from Alabama and will finish it in Ft. Myers, Florida.

"We will have traversed the entire Inter Coastal Waterway of Florida on nothing but sunshine," he said.

The Archimedes was constructed for less than $10,000 in materials.

To learn more about expanding solar energy into more homes and businesses go to http://www.flsolarchoice.org.

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