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All Solar Boat Starts Around-the-World Voyage

All Solar Boat Starts Around-the-World Voyage

A very large solar solar-powered yacht called Planet Solar has set out on a 31,000 mile trip around the globe. It is estimated it will maintain an average speed of 7.5 knots per hour. At that speed it should take about 160 days to travel around the planet.

The boat’s top is covered with 5,780 square feet of photovoltaic solar panels with a capacity of 93.5 kilowatts of electricity. The boat is a catamaran 101 feet in length. It cost about $13 million to construct and was funded by Rivendell Holding AG, a Swiss company renewable energy investment company.

If successful, the venture will demonstrate solar power is a real-world, seaworthy technology for long voyages, and that the shipping industry can replace fossil fuels with renewable energy sources. (Toyota’s car-carrying Auriga Leader employs solar panels to generate up to ten percent of its energy while docked.)

A spokesperson for the Solar Planet project said, “Our society is too dependent on fossil fuels, which are in limited supply and which are causing measurable negative effects on the earthís atmosphere. Itís now time to demonstrate the potential that renewable energies have to offer in the area of mobility.” (Source: Wired)

The unusual, and large yacht was constructed in Kiel, Germany in just 14 months. It is capable of accommodating up to 40 occupants, but for the very long journey, just four will be the crew. They have a website which constantly updates their position using Google Maps.

cockpit

Also, they publish their daily log entries, such as this one for Sept. 29/30, “In the night from Tuesday to Wednesday the weather situation was somewhat different, very lively seas, up to 40 knot winds and strong waves hitting the boat. For this reason, we decided to change course more to the south to absorb the suns rays more efficiently in order to recharge our batteries.”

Stopovers will take place at the following cities: Miami, Cancun, San Francisco, Sydney, Singapour, and Abu Dhabi. Of course, these locations are subject to change depending on scheduling, weather and the vessel’s condition.

Branded items such as baseball caps, and polo shirts with the Planet Solar logo are being sold on a website, if you want to support their work.

Image Credits: Planet Solar

Related Links:

100 Department Stores Go Solar
Third Solar Installation for Denver Airport

Read more: Conscious Consumer, Do Good, Life, Transportation, ,

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49 comments

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12:29AM PST on Feb 12, 2011

The Links are good, as the article.

5:13AM PST on Jan 14, 2011

Thanks for the article.

2:05AM PST on Nov 9, 2010

Best of luck.

4:52AM PDT on Nov 2, 2010

Nice boat

8:05PM PDT on Oct 20, 2010

Honolulu was not listed as a stop crossing the Pacific. This would be an obvious stop since the state will be the first plug in electric car state and a has a goal of being 80% solar.

1:29AM PDT on Oct 18, 2010

This is so awesome, I'll be very interested in seeing how this voyage goes. I'm glad that steps are being taken around the world in order to switch to clean energy - all public transport should become solar if possible!

7:11AM PDT on Oct 15, 2010

Solar is the way to go

4:42PM PDT on Oct 11, 2010

What a cool idea! They'll be able to find out just how efficient solar power would be, but it sounds like it could be problematic if they run into much bad weather.

4:45AM PDT on Oct 8, 2010

Hope some positive research will come out of this to benefit future generations.

7:23PM PDT on Oct 7, 2010

sounds good for solar

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