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Jotron Emergency Equipment Across the Pacific Ocean On Balsa Rafts

Kon-Tiki2 collage

Jotron is a leading manufacturer of professional communication systems for land, sea and air safety. Jotron equipment will contribute to safety on the two balsa rafts sailing from Peru to the Easter Island. On board the rafts of this 10,000km voyage of exploration, science and survival, otherwise known as the Kon-Tiki2 expedition, Jotron EPIRBs, GMDSS handheld VHF radios and AIS SARTs, and AISs Class A will aid in ensuring vital communications if an emergency situation should arise. Jotron has also supplied high-intensity marking lights and strobe lights for the entire crew.

68 years after Thor Heyerdahl and his Kon-Tiki expedition sailed 8,000km across the Pacific Ocean from Peru to the Tuamotu Islands on a hand-built raft, Torgeir Higraff is following in Mr. Heyerdahl’s footsteps. The Kon-Tiki2 expedition set sail from Callao, Peru on 7 November. For the first time in modern times, Torgeir Higraff aims to prove that a round trip on a raft build with 15th century technology is possible. The expedition is called Kon-Tiki2 as Mr Higraff seeks to double Thor Heyerdahl’s famous voyage by crossing the Pacific Ocean from Peru to Easter Island and then back on these two balsa rafts.

The two wooden rafts are each 17m-long, 7m-wide and carry a 90m² sail. The crew of 13 people from nine nations plans to complete the 10,000m round trip within 12 weeks. Mr. Heyerdahl’s expedition was designed to demonstrate that long sea voyages were possible many years ago, thereby creating contacts between cultures. The Kon-Tiki2 expedition will focus on documenting climate changes, marine life and pollution.

In 2006, Mr Higraff led his own expedition on the Tangaroa raft. Experts said he would not go any faster than Mr. Heyerdahl did in 1947 because the rafts were steered by winds and currents, but Mr Higraff broke Mr Heyerdahl’s record by 30 days.

Thor Heyerdahl and Torgeir Higraff are both Norwegian. Mr Heyerdahl is from the coastal city of Larvik, also where Jotron headquarters is located. Larvik is proud of its maritime history and is the home town to several famous mariners and marine architects. Among them Colin Archer, a shipbuilder notable for building safe and durable ships, including the Fram, which was used during both Fridtjof Nansen’s and Roald Amundsen’s polar expeditions.

"Jotron is proud to be taking part in such an adventure where our technology is relied upon to ensure the safety of the crew and contribute to scientific research. Safety should never be compromised, this equipment is so vital that the crew delayed departure from Callao when the shipment from Norway was delayed," says Jan Erik Sæter, portfolio manager GMDSS product & sales support at Jotron Maritime and Energy Communication Division.

We are excited to follow the crew on their expedition to the Easter Island.

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