Vessel with no crew sets sail from Plymouth as part of Mayflower 400 commemorations

    The Mayflower Autonomous Ship was christened at the Barbican yesterday

    A new vessel has taken to the water for the first time after setting off from Plymouth.

    The Mayflower Autonomous Ship (MAS) was christened yesterday afternoon (Wednesday 16 September) to mark the 400th year anniversary of the Pilgrims sailing from England to the New World.

    Powered by AI and the energy from the sun, the ship will be able to spend vast periods of time at sea, collecting valuable data about the ocean.

    The new-generation Mayflower promises to transform ocean science, enabling scientists to gather the data they need to understand critical issues such as global warming, ocean plastic pollution and marine mammal conservation.

    MAS has been built by marine research organisation Promare with IBM acting as technology partner.

    LISTEN to Andy Stanford-Clark - the Chief Technology Officer at IBM UK & Ireland - tell us how it works and how it feels to finally see it in person:

    LISTEN to Adrian Vinken - the Chairman of the Mayflower 400 Commemoration Programme - explain why this is such a significant moment for Plymouth:

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