1,857 km. The distance that has been flown(so far) by a plane powered completely by sunlight.
It’s not a drone.
The project started in 1999, after the creator’s last circumnavigation around the world. It partnered with various tech and aviation companies eager to create a working prototype by 2010. It even flew over us in the states in 2013.
André Borschberg, a former fighter pilot, is at the helm of the solar powered SOLAR IMPULSE 2. Currently passing Ahmendabad, India , the plane is expected to fly 35,000km( 21,000 miles) in five months. The plane itself is small(12 cubic feet of cockpit space) despite it’s wingspan rivaling a Boeing 747.
A lot of comforts were sacrificed when creating the craft; but it still carries the essentials such as emergency food, supplies, toilet, and bed. But the aircraft is not insulated from the elements; the pilot must face extreme temperatures ranging from -40°C to +40°C weather conditions.
Luckily, the plane will be frequently stopping and switching duties with the Concept Originator, avid Balloonist and Psychiatrist: Bertrand Piccard.
Piccard declares that the plane will be powered not only by Sunlight, but also the power of the human spirit. Piccard believes and has trained fellow pilot Andre Borsheberg in using his mental abilities via meditation and self-hypnosis in order to combat tiredness and the extreme conditions of the flight.
“Hypnosis is a simply another kind of exploration, spiritual exploration,” he said. “All of this—the flight, the clean energy, hypnosis, meditation—it’s all about learning and trying to improve life on this planet.”- Bertrand Piccard
Piccard continues by talking about the miracles that spiritual workouts are as important as Solar Energy.
The implications of this as viable technology in the near future could not come at a better time…. I hear that MARS ONE is in need of a Solar-Powered spaceship.
Let’s follow them on their Livestream/Youtube Page:
Here is An Awesome Vid to Breakdown the Project: