The challenge of crossing the icy Arctic Ocean is enormous!
Undoubtedly, the “Ribbing for Arctic” expedition is the highlight of 2022 in world maritime events. It is the first time a recreational rigid inflatable boat will attempt to enter the Arctic Circle, cross the Atlantic Ocean and the Northwest Passage. In such a demanding mission, of course, the appropriate electronic equipment is absolutely required.
It is true that each mission is unique, but this one has many peculiarities. It is a journey to one of the last parts of the earth where people arrived, but until today remains untouched and unexplored. It is not the thousands of miles we have to travel or the long passes we have to cross, but the extreme low temperatures, the icebergs, the dense fog that often covers everything in these latitudes and you cannot even see your bow. Movable ice sheets, which usually cover a large area, are transported quickly by the wind and especially by strong currents with the ability to block the sea or trap you for days on a secluded and deserted shore. The danger of polar bears, which descend to the shore in search of food that due to climate change and the melting of ice has become scarce. Sudden weather changes and gusty winds due to the low barometers that are installed almost permanently in these latitudes are the main reasons why the North Seas are considered the most dangerous, while the southern Cape of Greenland is considered the windiest. And of course, the legendary Northwest Passage: one of the most mythical passages on the planet that just fills with awe and anxiety in even the most experienced seafarer.
Where there is no escape and absolutely no contact. Where, when you take the first step and pass the entrance there is no going back except to reach the end, by crossing the icy ocean. Navigation through the Northwest Passage is difficult, and its history is associated with shipwrecks and missing persons. For centuries, great sailors like Henry Hudson and James Cook have failed to cross it. Hard weather, thick ice and the invisible dangers, forced many missions to go back. But the mission that turned out to be a tragedy was that of the British officer John Franklin in 1845, whose wrecks of his two ships were found recently. Refueling is also a huge problem, as the small Inuit communities are hundreds of nautical miles apart. We will wander in the highest latitudes, where the strong magnetic fields make the conventional compasses completely unreliable. The challenge of crossing the icy Arctic Ocean is enormous. The end of the world, as it is called, the most unexplored and uncharted region of the planet. Where mother Nature is the absolute ruler.
In such a demanding mission, of course, the appropriate electronic equipment is absolutely required. This is why we chose TIMEZERO and Furuno as our partners, which offer high quality equipment having many decades of experience while also distinguished for its innovative and highly reliable products that will help us navigate accurately and safely in the open seas.
Our team is very grateful and more than excited for this wonderful new sponsorship. It is a great honor for us to have such great safety and security with Furuno and MaxSea by our side, which provide the whole electronic and software equipment of the mission’s Rib. Navigation and communication now will be more reliable and easier with such trustful and high-tech equipment helping us to accomplish our mission and achieve our goal. The perfect combination of marine charts, satellite earth pictures, 3D data, weather forecasts, tides and currents will give us the best possible sense and feeling of the real and natural environment around our boat and our courses.
Why is TIMEZERO software so important for you?
Being well aware of where we are going to navigate in the most difficult seas of the northern latitudes, where the low barometric systems are almost permanently around Iceland and Greenland while the weather conditions are changing rapidly, we need a reliable and easy to use navigation software so as to be able to take fast and safe decisions taking into account many parameters. This is why we decided to trust TIMEZERO which has more than 30 years of experience.
Connecting directly to Furuno NavNet system via a simple Ethernet connection, TZ Navigator marine navigation software combined with a large map coverage area that can be selected from a complete list of electronic maps fully covers all the needs for safe navigation with the following main features:
- Boat location
- Weather forecast service
- Free global tide database
- Route and point management
- AIS function included, the ultimate collision avoidance tool
- 3D data and satellite imagery combined to get the best information about our trip
- Excellent cartography
Navigation has never been safer and easier even for the less experienced (beginners). The perfect combination of marine charts, satellite earth pictures, 3D data, weather forecasts, tides and currents will give us the best possible sense and feeling of the real and natural environment around our boat and our courses.
What is/are the most important feature(s) for you?
We will have easy access and control valuable information taking only a few minutes to navigate through TZ Navigator PC software having a wonderful sense of customization. Sitting comfortably in our cabin, we will have the ability to prepare routes and plan passages on our PC and then just export them to the plotter on the dashboard. With high resolution photos and the charts, we can easily find the best harbor or inlet to moor in.
Weather forecasts can be overlaid directly onto our chart while we can watch the weather forecast progress daily, for the next 16 days getting a great knowledge of the weather conditions helping us to safely decide which days could be preferred for cruising especially when we are planning to cover long distances. Knowing the wind direction and its speed, in combination with the wave height, we can plan the most comfortable route arriving safely and faster to our destination, achieving also the best possible fuel consumption. And all these will be visible through the screens of Furuno, on the durability of which we rely for the very extreme conditions that we will face.