Technology aiding history? Well, that seems to be the unique scenario, as the world’s largest solar-powered boat Planet Solar has started out on a mission on 11th of this month to find out what might be one of the oldest inhabited places in Europe. Crewed by an international team comprising of both Greek and Swiss researchers, the catamaran will make its crucial voyage around the region of southern Peloponnese peninsula – a scenic location which has been described as ‘prehistoric countryside’.
This endeavor is the fruit of the collaboration between Swiss school of archaeology and the Greek culture ministry. As for the goal of the marine-driven project, the historians hope to find out the settlement pattern of the inhabitants of the Franchthi cave, which is nestled along the Argolic Gulf. The pre-historic settlers here are believed to have lived between the tumultuous times of the Paleolithic and Neolithic periods, around 35,000 years ago.
Quite interestingly, there are evidences of the cave being abandoned at a certain point in history; and hence there is the possibility of a settlement being established in some proximate location from the cave (which even might be underwater as per present-day geography).
As for the inclusion of the Planet Solar, this is not the first time the giant catamaran has been used for a global endeavor. The 31 m long marine-craft had previously set the record by becoming the world’s first solar-electric vehicle to successfully circumnavigate our entire planet – a heroic task that took 584 days. In allusion to this fantastical voyage, the Planet Solar is also aptly christened as the ‘Tûranor’ – which translates to ‘power of the sun’ in the Tolkien-esque script from The Lord of the Rings.
Image Credits: Panoramio