The Turanor PlanetSolar, the first completely solar-powered boat to go all the way round the world, will finish its journey tomorrow. The catamaran will pull into Hercule Harbor in Monaco, the place it started, after 19 months at sea.
The world's largest solar-powered boat set off on September 27, 2010 and made its way across the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans, through the Panama and Suez canals and docked at Miami, Cancun, Brisbane, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Singapore, Abu Dhabi, and other ports along the way.
The PlanetSolar was made to be as lightweight and aerodynamic as possible. The 31x15 meter boat is made from carbon fiber and features 537 square meters of solar panels with a capacity of 93.5 kW, backed by a lithium-ion battery system. The route kept the boat and its four-person crew cruising as close to the equator as possible to provide the maximum amount of sunlight.
The project was masterminded by Raphael Domjan, an electronics engineer and outdoors enthusiast who wanted to do something big to promote the potential of solar power. I'd say mission accomplished.
When the boat reaches the finish line tomorrow, the solar power system on the boat will power a light show to celebrate. There will be a book and documentary released in September to coincide with the two-year anniversary of the beginning of the voyage.
via NY Times Green
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