Solar Impulse solar powered plane flies for over 24 hours in Switzerland
The last time we heard of the Solar Impulse, it was busy making headlines, thanks to its night-time-flying-abilities, being a solar powered plane. Well, the Impulse has now made it to the limelight yet again, this time for a 24-hour plus flight. This solar powered pair of wings hopes to circumnavigate the earth in future, using just solar power. The 24-hour flight that took place in Switzerland is just a start for a sparkling bright future. The plane took off at 5 am GMT, Wednesday from an airfield in Payerne, 80 miles northeast of Geneva, piloted by Andre Borschberg flying the plane to a height of nearly 28,000 feet (8,500 meters) throughout the day.
The plane altitude is lowered during the evening to 5,000 feet (1,500 meters) where it will remain for the rest of the night, till the break of dawn. With a wingspan of 63 meters, measuring 22 meters long and weighing 1,600 kilograms, this one sports 12,000 solar cells on its wings. Here’s wishing the Solar Impulse all the luck it needs for its future journeys!
Update – Telegraph reports that ‘The Solar Impulse aircraft touched down on runway at Payerne airfield, Switzerland at exactly 8:00am. Helpers rushed to stabilize the pioneering plane as it touched down, ensuring that its massive 207-foot (63-meter) wingspan didn’t touch the ground and topple the craft.