Pedaling under water for scientific research

Winter 2019/2020, Didier Bovard embarks on a new challenge, 1500 leagues (6000 km) under the sea, single handedly and without assistance. Starting from Mindelo the cultural capital of Cape Verde and finishing in Miami Florida with several stops planned in the Caribbean to promote the Oceanides project.

What makes the crossing unique is the submerged polycarbonate bubble fixed to the underneath of the «My Way» hydro cycle from where our adventurer will take his place to pedal a dozen hours a day. The bubble was developed by the HESGE (University of Applied Sciences Geneva) and the CPNV (Professional Center of Northern Vaud) and will be followed medically by the Clarens CIC Clinic (Switzerland).

«My Way» will be the ideal platform for scientific research in the aquatic environment; it will be autonomous over several weeks, non-polluting as propelled solely by pedal power and controlled solely by Didier.

Whilst gathering data in harmony with the marine ecosystem, Didier’s mission is also to bring back unpublished 2D and 3D images of everything around him, which will be shown at conferences and festivals thanks to the development of NVP3 (Nicolet Video Production 3D).

A fantastic challenge, inspired by Jules Verne’s novel, 20 000 leagues under the sea, which aims to show the beauty of our planet, but also its fragility, in order to better understand and respect it.

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Scientific studies at the Jules Vernes

Before Didier Bovard’s great departure, scientific studies will be carried out on the peri-alpine lakes of (Geneva, Annecy and Bourget) by the Alpine Research Center on Trophic Networks of Limnic Ecosystems (CARRTEL, INRA - USMB).

Installed on the hydro cycle is a new generation fish finder, manufactured by SIMRAD, which will collect valuable data on the size and distribution of fish. In parallel, temperature, pH, conductivity and chlorophyll concentration measurements will obtain an unequaled amount of data likely to feed mathematical models related to lacustrine operation.

Finally, it is also planned to sample environmental DNA, especially in catfish, a fish that is now well established in large lakes but whose distribution and impact are still poorly known.

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First part of the renovation of My Way

  • Exposing the hull, unscrewing the deck hardware, Padlocks, cleats, hood, handrail, solar panels and windsocks. Labor 20h @ 65 CHF / h ……………….1 300 CHF

  • Unscrewing of the 5 Plexiglas windows, cleaning of the gasket and removal of the anchors. Labor 16h @ 65 CHF / h ……………….1 040 CHF

  • Sanding and filling the outside of the boat. Labor 30h @ 65 CHF / h ………………1 950 CHF

  • Bright metallic red paint for the hull and black for antifouling (including preparation) Labor 50h @ 65 CHF / h ……………….3 250 CHF

  • Stainless steel structure…………….1 960 CHF