The MS Tûranor PlanetSolar will leave Venice tomorrow after an 8-month winter stay on Certosa Island. This departure marks the start of a new campaign, which will mainly consist of reaching Brittany to perform maintenance and transformation works in preparation for the boat’s next missions commissioned by the Race for Water Foundation. On her route, the largest solar powered boat in the world will make a stopover in Marseille in order to participate in the MEDCOP21.
Docked in the Veneto region of Italy since the end of her TerraSubmersa scientific expedition in September 2014, the MS Tûranor PlanetSolar will return to sea on May 23, 2015 and begin a new solar campaign. This represents the boat’s first navigation under the Race for Water Foundation’s flag, owner of the boat since mid-April 2015.
The largest solar catamaran ever built will get to the heart of the matter by dropping the anchor from June 3rd to 8th in Marseille, the first stopover of this campaign. In this ancient Mediterranean city, PlanetSolar will be the guest of honour of the MEDCOP21, the Mediterranean civil society forum on climate.
During the event, the vessel will be docked in front of the Villa Méditerranée, which will host the “Village des Solutions”. This area will be opened to the public and will aim at raising awareness about the stakes linked to climate change in the Mediterranean region. PlanetSolar has been invited to actively take part in this event as a photovoltaic ambassador and as a successful example of the use of clean energy.
After this event, the MS Tûranor PlanetSolar will continue her journey to Brittany, where maintenance works and some modifications will be performed. These modifications will be made in order to make the vessel operational for her next expeditions, which will be focusing on the issue of plastic pollution in the oceans. Gérard d’Aboville, Captain of the catamaran, feels very concerned about this ecological disaster and is looking forward to participating in these new missions:
“Throughout my career I have unfortunately witnessed the degradation of the world's oceans and this cause is thus very close to my heart. We must preserve the oceans against this plague of plastic pollution. I am looking forward to these new missions aboard the MS Tûranor PlanetSolar in the service of this cause.”
The maintenance work will, among others, be performed in the Cité de la Voile Eric Tabarly in Lorient (France). They will allow the vessel to play her role as a proper scientific platform once more, following the success of her previous DeepWater and TerraSubmersa expeditions.