Testing begins on autonomous ‘Mayflower’ ship ahead of Atlantic voyage


A computer-generated image of the new Mayflower vessel.


Humans aren’t the only ones to have had their travel plans ruined by the coronavirus. A robot-powered boat that was due to cross the Atlantic this month has been forced to delay its voyage until next April after the virus caused complications in its development.

The autonomous 15-meter trimaran has been built to push the boundaries of autonomous shipping while gathering scientific data on the ocean. The Mayflower Autonomous Research Ship (MARS for short) is being led by marine research organization ProMare, while IBM is the main technology partner.

The solar-powered vessel is set to start trials off the south coast of England in the…


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