‘Solar Voyager’ autonomous boat looks to make history in sun-powered journey across the Atlantic

About 200 miles due east of Boston, a robotic boat is putting along at a walking pace on what could be an historic journey across the entire Atlantic. “Solar Voyager,” built by two friends in their spare time, would be the first autonomous vessel to cross that ocean — and the first one to cross any ocean using solar power alone. Isaac Penny and Christopher Sam Soon have been tinkering away on the project for four years now and, while the craft, which they launched on June 1, still has a long way to go, it’s safe to say it’s already a success in many ways. Nevertheless, the two built Solar Voyager from scratch, with only the solar panels and some standard motor parts taken off the shelf. The 18-foot boat is slowly making its way between GPS waypoints and, if all goes well, it should arrive in Portugal this fall.”

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