It’s been a while since my last post on the beautiful projects we follow, but my time has been reduced so much that I have to prioritize. This year started with a really full agenda and you’ll see that the projects too. 2014 started with a lot of plans and great news about the solar catamaran MS TûranorPlanetSolar. Ending 2013 brilliantly, the PlanetSolar team won 2 prizes and prepared great adventures for this year. The best is to come, since the solar catamaran will make a stop in GREECE, can’t wait to see it live in our seas!
2014 Expeditions – This year a stop in GREECE
- 23rd Festival des Images de Mer (Festival of Sea Images)
Invited by NAUSICAA, the largest European complex dedicated to marine knowledge, the MS TûranorPlanetSolar will participate in the 23rd Festival des Images de Mer to be held between 17 and 21 April. Residents of Nord-Pas-de-Calais will have the opportunity to discover this strange marine bird through visits, forums and conferences.
- 2014 Solar1 Monte Carlo Cup, the first solar boat race
The catamaran will then continue its journey toward the Mediterranean Sea. It will return to the Principality of Monaco, the departure and arrival point of the vessel when it completed the first world tour powered by solar energy. It will participate in the 2014 Solar1 Monte Carlo Cup, the first solar boat race. With its average speed of 10km/h, the MS TûranorPlanetSolar will obviously not participate as a racer but as an exceptional host which will welcome the jury and the press invited to this event.
- Scientific Expedition in GREECE
The MS TûranorPlanetSolar should then head toward Greece where it is scheduled, in collaboration with the University of Geneva, to resume its role as a scientific platform for the purpose of studying submerged prehistoric landscapes. The catamaran would then be involved in work related to underwater geophysical measurements.
With such a great and diversified program the solar catamaran will have great opportunities to promote solar energy around the world.
PlanetSolar is out to sea again
While 2013 ended with great news for the PlanetSolar teams, the boat won two prizes the beginning of the year 2014 started with challenges. The first one was the 2013 Europeans Solar Prize in the “media” category for the exposure generated while completing the first world tour in 2010-2012. The second prize the new Transatlantic crossing world record with the official approval of the Guinness World Record.
The MS TûranorPlanetSolar arrived on 24 September 2013 at its winter berth, the Cité de la Voile Eric Tabarly in Lorient. From 2 November 2013 to 15 March 2014, the gigantic catamaran welcomed aboard school children and the general public on Saturdays and Mondays. It was an opportunity for visitors to discover the bowels of the world’s largest solar boat ever constructed and to learn about the objectives of the “PlanetSolarDeepWater” scientific expedition. The MS TûranorPlanetSolar thus brought a spot of sun to the Cité de la Voile visit! At the museum’s pontoon, the solar catamaran had the opportunity to rub shoulders with iconic ships such as the mythical Pen Duick or even the imposing sailboat Tara before heading for Concarneau in mid-January to undergo maintenance works.
Taking advantage of the annual closure of the Cité de la Voile Eric Tabarly (from 6 January to 14 February), the MS TûranorPlanetSolar headed toward Concarneau, the Blue City, which has a large dry dock for the dry-docking of the boat. Thus, for the third time since the end of its construction in 2010, the boat left its water. A delicate manoeuvre requiring some prudence since the vessel’s almost 100-tonne carbon hull is fragile. The boat is put into dry dock so that maintenance operations could be performed on the hulls. While the maintenance operations went well, it was the weather which put a few spokes in the boat’s propellers. The boat was supposed to return to Lorient at the beginning of February. But at that time Brittany was swept by consecutive storms of rare intensity, a large swell of more than 10 metres was measured. Under such conditions, it was not possible for the vessel to take to sea safely before reopening the museum. Therefore the teams were wise to sit it out patiently on dry land, at the bottom of the dry dock, until the skies were calmer. The MS TûranorPlanetSolar returned to Lorient on 19 February, two short weeks behind schedule.
Find out more on the PlanetSolar website PlanetSolar SA http://www.planetsolar.org
PlanetSolar official website: http://www.planetsolar.org
Press Releases first quarter 2014