Greetings from the warm and windy Atlantic!
This year, students sailing aboard the State of Maine were tasked with launching two five-foot unmanned mini-sailboats. The boats, built by students in the composite fabrication department at the United Technologies Center in Bangor, Maine, were developed to function as ocean research platforms and are equipped with an array of scientific sensors and limited steering capabilities that school and community groups can track to study of ocean wind and current patterns in the Atlantic. Richard Baldwin, founder of the MiniBoat Research Collaborative, and his students delivered the boats in Castine, shortly before our departure.
We crossed the Gulf Stream yesterday but sea conditions prohibited launching the boats. Luckily, there was a good weather window today and we launched the boats in the early afternoon. We have enjoyed a stead breeze throughout the day and the boats seemed very happy upon release.
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