ASAP Solar Jetski Makes Saving Lives Easier
(DiverWire) The ASAP solar-charging water craft is almost ready for release, introducing the world to the concept of a lightweight, fuel-efficient jet ski designed specifically for use by lifeguards and rescue workers. The ASAP has a tentative release date in 2014.
The ASAP itself is a veritable Cinderella story – the original prototype, created by British designer Ross Kemp, was built in a tent in his backyard. The idea came to him while he was training as a lifeguard at the Loughborough Lifesaving Club.
“I realized how incredibly difficult it was to tow and move a body in water,” says Kemp, during an interview with Future Inspired. “So I set about designing a small powerful water rescue craft for lifeguards.”
A student of Industrial Design Technology at Loughborough University, Kemp immediately went to work on his idea. He eventually pitched his idea to a BBC TV show called “Be Your Own Boss,” and was selected from thousands of candidates to be part of the show. Finding success there, he was able to meet with Richard Branson, famous billionaire creator of Virgin, to pitch ideas. Richard Branson even had the ASAP prototype flown down to Bondi Beach in Australia to test it in live conditions with real lifeguards.
The features of the ASAP that have drawn so much attention include the lightweight nature of the craft, which is designed to be launched quickly by one person. According to designer Kemp, it’s also going to cost a third the price of standard personal watercraft, making it easily affordable for rescue organizations. The concept behind the ASAP is that it can be charged from a solar-powered station, which would ideally be located at the lifeguard tower for constant charging.
With “saving lives,” in mind, the ASAP has been designed with a V-shaped keel that cuts quickly through the water with minimum drag. Not only does this increase fuel efficiency (and saves those batteries), but the hull shape also create a calmer ride with less jostling, an absolutely vital feature when rescuing injured people. The central platform is also designed as a ramp to pull injured parties onto faster, and with less force.
In 2014, look for the ASAP Water Rescue Craft, the only personal water craft designed as a tool to save lives.