Have you ever heard about a ship that is operated without manpower? Well if you haven’t then you are going to hear about it from us and will be witnessing it soon too. A group of students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is behind the hopes of creating a ship called the Mayflower 400. They’re hoping this unmanned craft will be the first to sail across the Atlantic. This year is a memorable one for the Mayflower, as it’s the 400th anniversary of the sailing of the original Mayflower Wagon. Though it was halted due to the covid pandemic that resulted in a lot of destruction all over the world in terms of human resources and economy.
Anchored off the coast of Plymouth, in England’s southwest county of Devon, the Mayflower 400 is a 4-masted working ship. The ship self-activates to listen for long-range calls from tagged whales swimming and feeding further out to sea. The journey from England to Plymouth, Massachusetts took about three weeks. The first pilgrims arrived at the shores of what is now Plymouth on December 21st in 1620.
KP 157, a fuel cell powered trimaran that is 50 feet long and weighs nine tonnes, has been modified by École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne. The boat dimensions are made with keeping all the general things in mind and taking the other cases where ships have failed to complete their journeys. Though the ship has been gifted with some particular dimension after having a lot of research on the particular topic.
This top-of-the-line vessel, built in the Netherlands and France by New Martec, is equipped with solar panels to power its recharging system and will carry out detailed studies on pollution in oceans. By continuing its journey, the vessel can study marine pollution and analyze plastic in the water, track aquatic mammals, and ultimately help protect the oceans.
“We have dramatically less time to act than we think we do,” says Brett Phaneuf, the man who is changing our view of the ocean. Phaneuf is the man behind the Mayflower Project, which uses 3D virtual reality technology that creates a realistic map of seafloor data. As part of his project, he has been able to study underwater environments in unprecedented detail — and he has been startled by what he has discovered.
A special robot on the ship, developed by University of Stuttgart scientists, will measure water and air quality, temperature and salinity levels plus other parameters. These projects are surely very much helpful for everyone in this particular field.
JAXA said in a post on its website, “With an unmanned ship, we can always continue observations and research even during rough seas or bad weather.” The ship will be a huge boost for all the people and if the experiment gets successful then it can surely be the one that everyone is looking for the future purposes.
If the weather is clear and permission is given from authorities, a new generation of freighters will set off on the May 15 ocean voyages. The ship will be a research base for many years, offering the potential to revolutionize commercial shipping.