Locals enjoying a break, Queen Salote wharf, Tonga, Turanor PlanetSolar in background.


Raphael Domjan said: "The weather is still quite favorable until Sunday, but early next week a depression seems to approach and will disrupt the trade winds. We could end up with unfavorable winds over 50 knots (100km / h) and a very rough sea."

50 knots!!! where did you pick up that load of baloney Raphael???
Fortunately you are not going to be battered by 50 knot winds otherwise with Turanor PlanetSolar's woeful propulsion system you would be at the mercy of the wind and waves and Turanor would likely be torn apart!
Raphael: "the sea is stirred up and our average speed drops below 5 knots." ... With propellers on the transoms what did you expect? duh!
(wind only 15 to 20 knots)
With your current propulsion system I strongly advise against going to Brisbane, you may get lucky, but then again it could be a disaster.
Use Perkins Shipping boatyard/slip in Darwin or if that is too far try Cairns Slipways.

After Turanor's propulsion system broke down on their first attempt to make Tonga they returned to Bora Bora and Raphael flew via Tahiti to Tonga's sustainable energy expo. Returning toTahiti was proving a problem for Raphael until pilots Bruno and Arnaud of Air Tahiti offered him a flight to Pappete in their cockpit. Turanor finally sets off for Tonga again after repairs by Markus to the propulsion system with Raphael back on board.

     Caveman? Jens discovers how to make fire (with electricity?) - burning the chametz?

the boyz just had chametz on passover!

( It's like plugging an extension cable into the Sun for power )

At dawn we scan the horizon for the appearence of what we are waiting for, what we depend on in order to progress, what is the source for this marine expedition around the world. Will Helios, the sun god in the Greek mythology, give us a sunny day? In addition to having his sunshine, we especially hope to capture the energy of it. A glance around allows us to quickly estimate the weather of the day. Then, when the sun arises from the waves, this is the moment of truth to see if reality matches with the forecasts.
To move forward day by day, we only consume a part of the energy produced during the daytime. The rest needs to be stored in our batteries to continue our navigation at night.
The main difference between a solar-powered boat and vessel driven with "conventional" power is the fact that with fossile energy one has to be sure to have enough fuel to reach the destination, while a solar ship does has not stored in its batteries enough energy for long voyages. Therefore one has to find the sun on his way to reach the port of destination.
The challenge to move this ship is like a lesson in humility towards nature. All in all we can not afford to consume more energy than we get on the way. This in some sense is the philosophy behind this eco adventure. It is about to learn to manage the energy stored in the batteries in a way which avoids running out of it. Every day leaves behind TÛRANOR PlanetSolar additional miles which increase the credibilty of this project for the well-being of our planet. So far we have managed to cover around 12.000 miles without having run out of energy. And we keep moving forward, the story continues...
The Turanor PlanetSolar Crew.

View of Turanor Planetsolar anchored in the Galapagos islands after her voyage from Monte Carlo from electric model helicopter.
Patrick Marchesseau, captain, talks to members of the Ecuadorian Government aboard Turanor Planetsolar in the Galapagos:

Luca and Hans engage visitors to the PlanetSolar exhibit at the Tongan sustainable energy expo. Prime Minister of Tonga, Lord Tu'ivakano signs the Turanor PlanetSolar expedition book.
Below Rafael Domjan initiator of the Turanor PlanetSolar project checks out the InterContinental Bora Bora's Deep Sea Water Air Conditioning. Now they need an Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) system to generate the electricity to drive the pumps that circulate the water from the deep ocean off Bora Bora, and to also supply the resort's electrical requirements.

Turanor PlanetSolar coming alongside quay in Bora Bora.
Photo of Turanor PlanetSolar from GoPro HD camera hanging off Pierre's kite, nice one of Bora Bora.

"We are the celebrity guest at the Nautical Show of Papeete and take part in the parade together with official authorities and also with the director of IFREMER for the South Pacific." ...crew.
"In the morning we exceptionally open the boat for the public for three hours. It is also possible to watch our 9 minutes movie - from the idea to the realization - at the quay next to PlanetSolar."

Oscar Temaru, President of the Assembly of Polynesie Francaise ... Sunset over Moorea from Papeete, Tahiti.
Patrick Marchesseau, captain of Turanor Planetsolar receives a plaque in recognition of the PlanetSolar project.

Turanor PlanetSolar in Papeete,Tahiti, lit up like a Christmas tree from stored sunlight!
Turanor PlanetSolar team arrive at Cook's Bay, Moorea from Rangiroa atoll.

Turanor PlanetSolar sneaked out of Rangiroa's Tiputa passage and is now just off Moorea already!

"Rangiroa, where we spend our last day, has a college that brings together all the students of Tuamotu's western atolls. Because of geographic remoteness, these students are forced to have a residence here where they stay up to 6 consecutive months without returning home. Tonight Jens, Christian and I are invited to give a presentation of the PlanetSolar project to this mixed group of about 120 students of the 6th to the 3rd grade. With the help of an image presentation we are able to show the vessel, describe the way it operates as well as the objectives of this round the world. We also share some of the highlights of our voyage. After our presentation, we have a discussion and answer questions of some students. They showed a keen interest in our solar boat."
"Hopefully in less than ten years after Turanor PlanetSolar's visit to the atoll of Rangiroa, these young students will have been able to realize projects with solar boats plying the turquoise waters of the lagoon to reduce pollution there"
... Crew of Turanor Planetsolar.

Diving Rangiroa, Patrick Marchesseau, captain of Turanor PlanetSolar waves to camera, Christian adjusts his weight belt while Jens enjoys the ride:

Turanor PlanetSolar arrives in Rangiroa from Fatu Hiva, motoring through the Tiputa Pass into the lagoon and mooring off the Kia Ora Resort.
The guys on Turanor PlanetSolar arrived in Atuona on Hiva Oa in les Marquises in Polynesie Francais to a warm welcome ...

Relaxing on Ua Pu ... while Turanor refuels from the Sun.

( and thanks for all the beautiful photos ;)

Raphael Domjan says:
"It is always amazing to see the passion and pleasure the world's largest solar ship generates even at these remote places."

Of course "remote places" are going to appreciate sustainable locally run energy solutions Raphael, because they are acutely aware of where their energy is coming from and how much it costs to buy and transport compared to the trade they do with the outside world. (What no oil?)
Turanor PlanetSolar could probably power the whole of Taiohae village?

Click image below to show Turanor's track (kml file) in Google Earth (only if you have Google Earth on your PC)

"In the morning our routing software for the first time proposes a route to the Marquesas Islands, after three weeks of only indicating an infinite navigation time to our next port of destination, Nuku Hiva."
Filet mingon with scalloped potatoes, after a nice hot shower? Now we know why the Turanor team are keeping their speed down ...
(Freezer + fridge + stove + desalinator + water heater + electronic entertainment gear + fans) = the good life.

Turanor PlanetSolar's E-flite Blade 400 Electric Mini Helicopter with GoPro HD camera. Although you have to be more accurate at pointing the camera, videos come out much better using the 1920 x 1080p setting. Upload them to YouTube at 720p.


Suggest you put that best course plotter in storage for later, it may be ok in temperate latitudes but ...
The rain it raineth every day upon the just and unjust fellow, but more upon the just because the unjust hath the just's umbrella.

Raphael Domjan - Mister Softee ...

"Today is St. Valentine's Day, a perfect occasion to make some vanilla icecream. This gives us the opportunity to have for dessert a "Coupe Danemark", a Swiss specialty: Vanilla icecream with warm, melted dark chocolate. Very tasteful, and all done by solar energy!
Like the days before, we have beautiful sunsets embracing the whole horizon. Tomorrow is a great day for solar vehicles and for the whole team PlanetSolar. We will beat the record of the Midnight Solar Team, which had traveled 9,364 miles, or 15.070 km in 2004. We will then be the solar electric vehicle having covered the longest distance ever."

. . . Raphael and Crew of Turanor Planetsolar.

Chloe Perin, mathematician, in deep thought atop Har Karkom in the Negev. Click photo for her CV.

Chloe's peaceful thought captures the essense of the special gift that only a few humans possess, the ability to build the physical universe of which they are a part from symbols that can be manipulated to explore that universe. Chloe would not be able to acheive her level of understanding without the great thinkers from the region she is taking inspiration from.

Without mathematics we would not have the power over our environment that some less thoughtful of us now wield to our disadvantage. We would not have all the things we have constructed that should give us all more time to develop man's special gift, thought.

That violent computer game you are immersed in with it's realistic graphics and physics would not be possible without the deep patient thought of mathemeticians who's work it grew from.


Jens' solar smile and solar slumber.
Even way out on the Pacific Ocean fishermen appreciate the too deadly solar powered electric boat, Turanor Planetsolar:


Engine hardware update

Engine software update,
Christian Ochsenbein

Engineer at work.

"We gave a PlanetSolar watch from our sponsor Candino to the chief engineer for his help" ... Raphael.

Jason, a technician from Drivetek in Bienne/Switzerland, discusses with local engineers the removal of the electric motor, removal of the pulley, which is locked onto the motor shaft, and finally replacing the electric motor with the reserve motor.

Bela vista

Ambassadors for Galapagos tourism

Fish market.

Taking Turanor's electric bike ashore in the water taxi, Santa Cruz island.

Galapagos locals get the chance to explore a wonderous solar powered electric boat ...
"We had no more access to our floats because seals with their young ones had taken up residence there. I needed to take action. A bucket of sea water has been very effective. After this intervention we now are able again to move freely on the boat." ... Raphael.
Ron el tiburon emerges from the depths of the sea ... click photo.

Christian Ochsenbein meets Ron el tiburon:

Below World Wildlife Fund Galapagos watch multimedia presentation by PlanetSolar team under less than optimum lighting conditions ... (Get organized guys!)

Above, Turanor anchored in Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, San Cristobal island.
Below, the crew of Turanor are processed by the friendly Ecuadorian officials of the Galapagos Islands:

Above, Turanor PlanetSolar crossing the line celebration as she cruises into the Galapagos islands.

Click image below to show Turanor's track (kml file) in Google Earth (only if you have Google Earth on your PC)

The TURANOR PLANETSOLAR team may be thinking more about the speed of their circumnavigation, so they are not visiting the West coast of the USA but heading into the South Pacific ocean to pick up the South East trade winds which are strong at the moment as there is a La Nina event happening.
As Turanor PlanetSolar can present a fair bit of windage from the stern this could boost their speed appreciably.
At 5 knots average they should be able to make the North of Papua, New Guinea in about 2 months.
The cyclone Season in the South West Pacific can extend into April, which means they will arrive in the cyclone season.
They can avoid the cyclones by keeping close to the equator during the last part of their South Pacific voyage.
As they need sun and don't want to be zapped by lightning they will need to avoid the Inter Tropical Convergence Zone, which should not be a problem.

Raphael Domjan rescues a turtle tangled up in a rope between Panama and the Galapagos.

Below Turanor PlanetSolar leaving Panama for the Galapagos, docked in the Flamenco Marina on the Pacific coast and entering the Panama canal at night.

Turanor PlanetSolar, night watch en route to Panama from Cartagena, Colombia.

Raphael Domjan who realized the dream of Turanor PlanetSolar receives a plaque from the City of Cartegena presented by Mayor Judith Pinedo Florez.

Turanor leaving Cartagena, Colombia for Colon, Panama at full speed.

Above is a photo of Cartegena harbour from Ivrisaac on Google Earth, click photo for high resolution image, and click again to zoom, use scroll bars to look around the harbour.

above, Congratulations on arriving in Cartagena, Colombia Turanor Planetsolar team. (click photo and here for stories)

below: "Raphael escaped for a few moments with the electric bike of PlanetSolar and went to the historic city of Cartagena. It was just magical to discover this place with its cobbled streets, the colorful shops."

Columbian police have seized 1.5 tons of cocaine in a shipment of dog food in the city of Cartagena, destined for the United States.

"The drugs were hidden in the bottom of a container holding a shipment of dog food," Colombian police chief Oscar Naranjo said in a statement on Tuesday.

The container was scheduled to be shipped from Cartagena to Honduras, then to the Dominican Republic, and finally to the US.

The cocaine allegedly belonged to the gang "Los Urbanos."

"[The cocaine] was packed in 753 blocks weighing approximately two kilograms each, with the seal of the Usuga David brothers: the symbol of a scorpion and the initials LR" Naranjo said.

The drugs were estimated to have a street value of around USD 45 million.


Karcher team keep panels clean ...

Sunset over the Marina la Amada, Cancun, Mexico; sunrise looking towards Isla Mujeres.

Louis Palmer of Zero Race visits Turanor Planetsolar at the Marina la Amada in Cancun ...

Below Turanor PlanetSolar approaches the best berth at Marina Amada, Cancun, Mexico. The team are greeted by the welcoming Cancun government officials.

Have the attendees at the climate conference in Cancun failed to notice the elephant in the room? (photos AP & Dancer)

Click here to watch all parts of "Arithmetic, Population and Energy" - a talk by Professor Al Bartlett

The Turanor PlanetSolar was docked in Miami, Fla., for four days before leaving Tuesday for Cancun, Mexico. The ship arrived Saturday morning during its round-the-globe expedition and the vessel will continue to Cancun during the World Climate Conference.
(click photos for SolarManpower & MSNBC story)
Below, PlanetSolar's ManPower contemplating their crossing of the Caribbean/Yukatan current to Cancun.

PLANETSOLAR Turanor team arrive at Miami Beach Marina !!! . . .

Immo Stroher, even the amazing feats of the all electric White Zombie on a drag strip have not penetrated the public mind, but every stone helps to build the castle.

If you can't wait to feel electric exhilaration sign up for a Tesla Roadster at Tesla Motors .

Only 6 people to welcome the arrival of Turanor Planetsolar to her berth in Miami Beach, including Kellie Butler reporting for WPLG 10 Local TV! (nice reporting Kellie)
Raphael Domjan and Prince Albert of Monaco chat before the departure of Turanor PlanetSolar on her round the World voyage from Monte Carlo.

PLANETSOLAR team arrive off Saint Martin in the Caribbean from Monaco . . . (click photo for website)