What’s been Happening?

Ronnie Simpson Sailing

​OceanPlanet Energy joins Shipyard Brewery & American Power Systems in supporting Ronnie Simpson in the Global Solo Challenge, offering energy system services for "Shipyard Brewery" (formerly Sparrow), a 1994 Open 50. Sure to be an exciting race, check out...

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Fall 2023 Newsletter

​ We're still waiting on all the leaves to fall, but Autumn is here.      Its the season of hauling boats or heading down south, and time to start thinking about winter upgrades to make next summer the best boating season yet! From solar panels to alternators, total...

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Summer 2022 Newsletter

​ Summer in Maine has a special way of just flying by, and before you know it the days are getting shorter and the breeze a little cooler. Fall looms ahead, but the sun isn't done with us yet. In between our summer fun, we've been busy working on new projects,...

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Fall 2021 Newsletter

​ Fall Migration Another incredible summer comes to an end here along the coast of Maine. Exploration and adventure gives way to winter preparation for some, and others a final hurrah before sailing south! Lots to be thankful for here at OPE this season as we look...

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Spring 2021 Newsletter

​ Happy Spring from the Team at OPE After a busy winter, we are excited to emerge from the darkness, uncover our boats, plan our summer adventures, and above all, help all our clients get what they need for a successful season on the water. We have lots of exciting...

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July & August 2020 Newsletter

Greetings OPE Friends & Followers,   We hope that the summer has been treating everyone well and that folks are finding time to get outside or on the water to enjoy some boating & back road adventures. Here at OPE, we have taken turns going on our own...

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June 2020 Newsletter

Greetings from Bath, ME!- the home of Ocean Planet Energy.  The weather in early June has been amazing as we head towards a long-standing boating deadline – July 4th. Back before the Covid 19 pandemic changed our world, July 4th was the traditional deadline for all...

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May 2020 Newsletter

Hi Everyone, This is the first official OceanPlanet Energy (OPE) Newsletter!   And as such, given the current Covid19 situation, I have been pondering the appropriate approach to take. Some of us here have had friends and/or family affected, and I'm sure many of you...

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4/14/20– Here is an article on the latest Morrelli & Melvin-designed HH66 featuring energy systems designed by OceanPlanet Energy in tandem with Wayne Meretsky.  https://seahorsemagazine.com/current-issue/155-content/may-2020/896-the-best-yet

3/26/20- Here is an update on OPE’s status and precautions during the COVID-19 crisis.

We are proud to announce that Nigel Calder has joined forces with OceanPlanet Energy!!!!

Check out the Nigel Calder Press Release for all the details.


October 8, 2019 Have a look at this new video by Billy Black showcasing an energy system designed by OceanPlanet Energy on Gunboat 57 Vai Vai.

September 13 2019 Check out the Panbo report on M/V Bliss with it’s Simarine system and MGDC alternators & Solbian Solar. https://www.panbo.com/bliss-100hp-diesel-powers-trawler-seakeeper-and-huge-battery-bank/

Updated September 7th 2019 Check out the Panbo report on the Simarine monitoring system.  https://www.panbo.com/simarine-pico-good-ideas-in-battery-monitoring-more/

August 15 2019 First New Nordhavn Lithium-ion Battery System Arrives!  https://nordhavn.com/2019/08/13/first-new-nordhavn-lithium-ion-battery-system-arrives/

April 10 2018  Here is a link to a report put together by Solbian about the positive test results of some Solbian panels that have been in the field for 5 years. https://www.solbian.eu/en/blog/polymers-vs-glass-a-five-years-comparison-n255 

March 7, 2018  Cruising life: Jason and Claudia share with us their experience on Trimaran Spirit   https://www.solbian.eu/en/blog/trimaran-spirit-n252

October 2017  Here is an article by world class yachting photographer and racing sailor Onne Van Der Wal who recently refit his Pearson 36 Snoek with new systems and charging including Solbian Solar panels & Genasun controllers provided by OPE.  “The Snoek Chronicles”

9/3/17  Here is a cool video done by RV with Tito of his solar panel installation on his RV.   Brian and his wife Melissa have travelled throughout the country in their RV for decades and now share their experience & knowledge with fellow RVers at www.rvwithtito.com.  Here is a link directly to the video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H9JFYZt__Bo&feature=youtu.be

8/29/17  Check out this “On the Wind” podcast produced by 59° North Sailing about Bruce’s time in the Vendée Globe.  It is being re-posted in anticipation of a podcast scheduled for October focusing on the technical side of outfitting and managing onboard energy systems. https://www.59-north.com/onthewindpodcast/205-bruce-schwab-recycled

5/5/17 Solbian inaugurates new manufacturing facility & equipment. https://www.pv-magazine.com/2017/05/05/solbian-inaugurates-flexible-solar-cell-factory-in-italy/

2/21/17 We wish a huge congratulations to Rich Wilson as he crosses the finish line of the 2016/2017 Vendée Globe. Not only did he become the oldest skipper to complete the race, but he also beat Bruce’s record by almost 3 days landing him the record time for an American solo circumnavigation.  We are so happy for Rich and are thankful that we were able to play a tiny part in the action by providing the solar, battery and monitoring systems to Great American IV. Check out more details here: http://www.vendeeglobe.org/en/news/18933/rich-wilson-takes-thirteenth-place

Since 11/05/16  Read about the Vendēe Globe action at the official race website.   OceanPlanet Energy is proud to have systems aboard Hugo Boss, Great American IV, & Finistère Mer Vent.  Congratulations to all competitors for a job well done!

7/12/16 Here is a great article about 2 anglers, a common idea and the formation of Solar Performance.  They utilize the Solbian AllinOne to keep their bass boat’s batteries charged.  http://www.bassfan.com/news_article/7633/harnessing-solar-power-on-the-water#.WHUjiPkrJdg

05/18/16 Bruce went for a sail with the Alex Thompson Racing team on Hugo Boss to take a look at the new OPE-Li3 installation and have some fun.  Here is what he had to say:

Although I’ve been twice RTW (02/03 Around alone, 04/05 Vendee) I don’t often get the chance or have the time to get on the newer boats.  Although…we at OceanPlanet Energy have been able to supply both Rich Wilson and Alex Thomson with lithium batteries and other gadgets.   Early last year was able to do a short trip with Rich on GA4, which was great.  But of course being here in Maine we don’t often get the latest IMOCA 60’s here.

So when when I heard from from Alex Thomson, and Tom Robinson (of Osprey Technical, a great UK outfit and dealer for our new OPE-Li3 batteries) that they would be working on Hugo Boss and test sailing out of Newport last week….I had to make the 4hr drive to Newport Shipyard, starting at 4am from Woolwich, ME.  It was worth it, both for the opportunity to review some systems/charging details, and of course to see the amazing new semi-foiling IMOCA 60 in action.

Wow.  I was in a daze much of the time, awed by the boat and equally impressed by Alex and his great ATR team.  Here are some photos, which do little justice to the sensation of a 60ft boat semi-flying with 8+ feet of bow flying clear above the water, in only about 12kts of wind.  Of course one worries about hitting something hard with the foils (works of art), however the speed advantage and sensation is irresistible if one wants to win the Vendee Globe.  Which I think Alex has a very good chance of doing.



03/04/16 A look at flexible solar technologies by Advanced Textiles Source featuring Luca Bonci of Solbian Energy Alternative.  http://advancedtextilessource.com/2016/03/let-there-be-flexible-light/

06/30/15 Another great new Solbian product launch that REALLY WORKS…and for a wider market than marine…Bruce has a prototype in the office and it quickly charges a phone or tablet with solar power…not one of those wimpy “solar chargers” that don’t do much…the Energy Flyer is a real powerhouse, using SunPower high-efficiency cells.   https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/energy-flyer–2#/story

06/2015 Daniel Theobald of Cambridge, MA converts a VW bus to electric power and uses Solbian solar panels for charging.  Check out the details here:  Electric VW bus

01/26/15 Bruce did a podcast interview about the Vendee Globe, etc. with Andy Schell of 59 North. Check it out here…

01/15/15 Solbian’s newest innovation is now in production.  The Solbian SP ALLinONE series features the highest efficiency Sunpower cells paired with MPPT solar charge controllers and constructed into Solbian’s standard flexible backing.  It is the simplest way to install a solar array.  The 2 cables coming from the panel go directly to your battery.  Cantact us for more information on this new product.

9/10/2014–  Solbian panels to be used for the award winning Blue Star Delos Renewable Energy Innovation Project…http://www.marinelink.com/news/shortlisted-marine-power376791.aspx

Throwback to Bruce’s solo racing days

Check out some of Bruce’s collection of videos and pictures from the Around Alone race in 2003 all the way through his Vendée Globe Race.


Also, take a look at some of these Sailing Anarchy updates from Bruce.

Bruce answers a Sailing Anarchy question about batteries…http://sailinganarchy.com/tag/ocean-planet/

Bruce checks in with Sailing Anarchists about the status of OceanPlanet Energy…http://sailinganarchy.com/2014/02/18/no-worries/

Updates from the Field

Rich Wilson just completed the 2016 Vendee Globe solo non-stop Round the World Race aboard his Open 60 Great American IV.  Maine Yacht Center completed a major electrical refit of GA IV  including Genasun GLi, Philippi monitoring, and Solbian solar.  Check out his educational website.  www.sitesalive.com

The Alex Thompson Racing team finished second in the 2016/2017 Vendee Globe starting on November 6th 2016. During the recent refit, Hugo Boss was equipped with the new OPE-Li3 marine lithium battery system.

OPE Tech Blog

Sizing and selecting solar controllers for Boats

Sizing and selecting solar controllers for Boats

by Tom Whitehead With the rising awareness of energy use and conservation, and the expanding demand for power on both day-use recreational and offshore cruising boats, many boat builders and boat owners are turning to alternative sources of power, including solar. ...

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