PARIS (AP) — A 71-year-old Frenchman has departed on a journey across the Atlantic in a specially designed barrel capsule, which will use ocean currents alone to propel him across the sea.

Jean-Jacques Savin set off from El Hierro in Spain's Canary Islands on Wednesday and is aiming to complete his 4,500-kilometre (2,800-mile) journey to the Caribbean in about three months.

Savin will drop markers from his three-meter (10-foot) long, 2.1-metre (seven-foot) wide resin-coated plywood capsule along the trip to assist oceanographers in their study of currents in the Atlantic Ocean.

The barrel is equipped with a kitchen area, and a mattress with straps to keep him from being thrown about by rough seas.