The TURANOR PlanetSolar, the world’s largest solar-powered boat, has
just completed the first stage of its journey around the world – a
trans-Atlantic journey from Monaco to Miami. The Swiss-designed
solar-powered catamaran left Monaco on the 27th of September and docked
in Miami just a few days ago, on the 28th of November.
At 101.7ft (31 meters) long and 49.2ft (15 meters) wide, the TÛRANOR
PlanetSolar is the world’s largest solar-powered boat. The vessel is
completely fuelled by renewable energy, with its solar cells having a
22% efficiency rate. These are the highest rated cells available for
purchase on the market, and the cells cover over 500 square meters of
the ship. The solar cells are able to power two electric motors which
are found in the hull, giving the ship at a top speed of 14 knots. Most
notably, the large surface area of solar cells means that the catamaran
can travel for up to three full days, even without direct sunlight – any
excess energy is stored in a state-of-the-art lithium-ion battery.
After this layover in Miami, the TÛRANOR PlanetSolar will head to
Cancún, Mexico for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate
Change, where it will participate in activities organized by the Swiss
government. The vessel is then expected to fully circumnavigate the
world in the coming months, visiting San Francisco, Sydney, Singapore
and Abu Dhabi, before returning home to Monaco.
The multi-national crew of the ship include Frenchman Patrick
Marchesseau (Captain), Christian Ochsenbein (Bern, Switzerland),
Michaela von Koskull (Finland), Jens Langwasser (Kiel, Germany) and
project initiator Raphael Domjan (Yverdon-les Bain, Switzerland).