“Solar Impulse is the only airplane of perpetual endurance, able to fly day and night on solar power, without a drop of fuel.”
Solar Impulse 2 is a “revolutionary single-seater aircraft made of carbon fiber [that] has a 72 meter wingspan (larger than that of the Boeing 747-8I) for a weight of just 2,300 Kg, equivalent to that of a car. The 17,000 solar cells built into the wing supply four electric motors (17.5 CV each) with renewable energy. During the day, the solar cells recharge lithium batteries weighing 633 Kg (2077 lbs.) which allow the aircraft to fly at night and therefore to have virtually unlimited autonomy.”
This airplane was designed following its prototype’s journey in Europe and across the United States (see The Good Times July 17, 2012 post). The project’s fathers, Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg, are preparing for the next adventure: the 2015 round-the-world flight. It is planned from March to July 2015, over oceans and continents. That’s good news indeed!
So stay tuned for more on this revolutionary, solar powered airplane and visit the SOLAR IMPULSE website.