Scheduled to arrive back at its beginning port of Monaco soon, the Turanor PlanetSolar has just completed a 19 month voyage around the world using only the power of its solar panel covered deck. The highly unique ship, which is built in catamaran fashion, is the worlds first vehicle to travel completely around the globe using only solar power — in this case 38,000 SunPower solar cells.
The 4 person crew extensively documented the trip, creating videos, blogging and posting photos to show that this technology is full of promise and ready for development into ever more refined vehicles. The 102 foot long boat, the largest solar powered example in the world, uses 537 square meters (5780 sq feet) of solar panel charging six banks of lithium-ion batteries. The stored energy from the days sun provides the vessel with power around the clock and in less than optimal weather conditions, like fog and rain.