Largest solar-powered boat completes mission

By Casey Frye, CCNN Writer

solar boat trip
After around 3 months at sea, the world’s largest solar-powered boat returns to land!

After a 3-month-long voyage across the Atlantic Ocean, the world’s largest solar-powered boat  – the MS Turanor PlanetSolar – finally docked in Paris. The vessel is about 102 feet long and weighs a hefty 60 tons. With more than 800 high-tech solar-powered panels covering hundreds of square feet, the Turanor PlanetSolar is less like a boat and more like a water vessel from Star Trek!

Last June, University of Geneva (UNIGE) scientists set sail across the Atlantic Ocean in the solar-powered boat to collect data on climate change. They called the scientific expedition the “PlanetSolar DeepWater.” Along the way, it took them exactly 22 days to cross the ocean, which set a world record!

“[The expedition] made it possible to test several scientific instruments – some of which were prototypes developed at UNIGE – in real conditions,” said Martin Beniston, climatologist and director of the Institute of Environmental Sciences at UNIGE. “Extensive physical, chemical, and biological data is now in the hands of the institution and will be the subject of a thorough analysis. Although the study of this information is not yet under way, interesting trends are becoming apparent…”

The scientists from PlanetSolar DeepWater have collected an unprecedented amount of data, and as of now, the UNIGE researchers are busy analyzing the information.

Images and video courtesy of Planet Solar.