We rely on it everyday without consideration. We would struggle to exist without it. Of course I’m talking about technology. The simple fact that I can send images, video and this text to you from one of the most remote places on the planet is remarkable.
To start with, even receiving this blog from me requires a lot of systems. I’ll be transmitting my video footage this evening from the boat using an Inmarsat’s Fleet Broadband 500. That’s the big dome you see on the back of these boats. There’s a smaller one for a slower connection used for emails and photos transmissions on top of that. So my video gets broken up into tiny packets then gets sent on an 80,000-mile journey to space and back to earth to end up in Volvo Ocean Race HQ. The packets are all reassembled to end up as the video I sent from the boat. The time is takes depends on the size of the video but a four minute video will be sent to HQ in anything between 35-50 minutes…not bad for a 3 GB file and no cables!
Advances in technology mean we can send more news and stories to share with you the viewers at home, but they also extend to the boats themselves. When asked what they think has been the big advances in technology in sailing, the majority of the crew mentioned carbon fibre. I almost forgot that the entire shell I live in, rig, parts of the sails, and almost every other part are constructed of carbon fibre. This material allows both strength and lends itself to be super light, which means faster speeds for us.
Weather modeling received on the boat is also an ever-evolving technology, a constant variable that affects not just us as sailors and competitors but the entire human race. “Wind. It means the world to us” is Vestas’ company slogan, and you can see how wind, weather and climate change impact each and every one of us. We must keep technology moving and finding alternatives to better our world and improve it for coming generations.
Finally, one item that hasn’t changed in the face of the ever-advancing technology is the toilet! Now of course it’s made of carbon, but essentially it’s the same thing it was 200 years ago. Think about that! We can send men to space, do open heart surgery and sail around the world single-handedly, but a toilet is still a toilet! Honestly, you would have thought we would have moved on a bit…
Bye for now Land People!
Want to learn more about wind energy? Visit www.vestas.com
Team Vestas Wind are also in a Race against climate change. Discover why this is also a race we must win: www.aracewemustwin.com