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Friday, June 26, 2009

26/06/09: Round-the-world Solar Powered Plane!

Swiss adventurer Bertrand Piccard has unveiled a prototype of the solar-powered plane he hopes eventually to fly around the world.

Solar Impulse plane

The initial version, spanning 61m but weighing just 1,500kg, will undergo trials to prove it can fly at night.

Dr Piccard, who made history in 1999 by circling the globe non-stop in a balloon, says he wants to demonstrate the potential of renewable energies.

He hopes to fly a later version of the plane across the Atlantic in 2012.

The flight would be a risky endeavour. Only now is solar and battery technology becoming mature enough to sustain flight through the night - and then only in unmanned planes.

But Dr Piccard's Solar Impulse team has invested tremendous energy - and no little money - in trying to find what they believe is a breakthrough design.

"I love this type of vision where you set the goal and then you try to find a way to reach it, because this is challenging," he told BBC News.

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1 comment:

  1. Solar energy is the best natural resource that we have this time even more that fuel is too expensive. In fact i want to approach costa rica investment opportunities and look all the alternative this country can have because it climate. We must to find the way to save our planet and to use solar energy could be the first step.