Tûranor PlanetSolar – is not just a catamaran, but the first boat to travel around the world using only solar power. Photovoltaic panels, covering almost an entire deck, consume enough sunlight to charge the 8,5 tons of lithium-ion batteries and to provide sufficient amount of energy to circumnavigate the globe. It takes around two days to fully charge the batteries, which further can be used for 72 hours.
During its expedition of 584 days (2010 – 2012) PlanetSolar has served a scientific purpose – the team was exploring the Gulf Stream. The lack of carbon emissions from the ship allowed arranging more precise analysis of the climate change. After all, the boat is not perfect from the practical point of view – it is big and slow, but it still has served its purpose and demonstrated how scientific research can be implemented with minimum of negative effect on the environment.