Friday October 19, 2018
Home Science & Technology After the his...

After the historic journey, Solar plane lands in Dayton, Ohio

The plane can climb to 28,000 feet (8,500 meters), but generally flies at lower altitudes at night to conserve energy.

1
//
116
The Solar Impulse 2 airplane, flown by test pilot Markus Scherdel, flies off the coast of Oahu during a test flight from Kalaeloa Airfield in Kapolei, Hawaii, March 3, 2016. REUTERS/Hugh Gentry
Republish
Reprint

By Chris Michaud

(Reuters) – An experimental airplane powered solely by energy from the sun landed in Ohio on Saturday night on the latest leg of its historic bid by pilots and developers to fly around the globe without a drop of fuel.

The single-seat Solar Impulse 2 aircraft arrived in Dayton shortly before 10 p.m. local time, some 17 hours after leaving Phoenix Goodyear Airport, the project team said on its official Twitter page.

 Close-up of a 1928 reconstruction of the first Wright Brothers' aircraft. Image source: Wikimedia Commons

Close-up of a 1928 reconstruction of the first Wright Brothers’ aircraft. Image source: Wikimedia Commons

“People told the Wright Brothers & us what we wanted to achieve was impossible,” said Bertrand Piccard after landing. “They were wrong!”

The locale was of special significance to the pilots, as the  home base to aviation pioneers Orville and Wilbur Wright.

Amanda Wright Lane, a descendant of the brothers, neither of whom ever married, was on hand to welcome the flight.

With a wingspan exceeding that of a Boeing 747 but an ultra-light carbon-fiber skin and overall weight of a car, the Solar Impulse cruises at speeds ranging from only 34 to 62 miles per hour (55 to 100 kph).

The four engines of the propeller-driven aircraft are powered exclusively by energy collected from more than 17,000 solar cells built into its wings. Excess energy is stored in four batteries during daylight hours to keep the plane flying after dark.

The plane can climb to 28,000 feet (8,500 meters), but generally flies at lower altitudes at night to conserve energy.

Piccard and Andre Borschberg have been taking turns piloting the plane on each leg of the journey. Both have trained to stay alert for long stretches of time by practicing meditation and hypnosis.

Borschberg set a new endurance record for the longest non-stop solo flight last July during a 118-hour trans-Pacific crossing, over five days and five nights, from Japan to Hawaii. He also set new duration and distance records for solar-powered flight. Battery damage sustained during the crossing kept the aircraft grounded for nine months.

The Swiss team’s ultimate goal is to achieve the first round-the-world solar-powered flight, part of its campaign to bolster support for clean-energy technologies.

The team hopes eventually to complete its circumnavigation in Abu Dhabi, the starting point for the journey in March 2015.

The two men completed an earlier multi-flight crossing of the United States in a prototype of the solar plane in 2013 as a precursor to their globe-circling quest.
(Reporting by Chris Michaud and Steve Gorman)

Related Articles:

 

Click here for reuse options!
Copyright 2016 NewsGram

  • Pritam Go Green

    That’s great !!! Now even solar planes are being manufactured. We all collectively need to work in a positive direction so that the world becomes less dependent on non renewable sources of energy.

Next Story

Japan Sees Unexpected Cherry Blossoms

Japan was this year hit by a series of typhoons

0
Cherry blossoms
Cherry blossoms bloom unexpectedly in Japan. Flickr

Some of Japan’s famed cherry blossoms, also known as sakura, have bloomed unexpectedly this autumn, according to weather experts.

The famous pink and white flowers are typically visible for about two weeks in the spring – a phenomenon tourists from around the world come to witness, the BBC reported.

But more than 300 people have reported cherry blossoms in their neighbourhood in October, according to meteorological company Weathernews.

cherry blossoms
Sakura Flowers. Flickr

The experts have said a series of typhoons could have contributed to the phenomenon.

“This has happened in the past, but I don’t remember seeing something of this scale,” Hiroyuki Wada, a tree doctor at the Flower Association of Japan told public broadcaster NHK on Thursday.

Japan was this year hit by a series of typhoons, including Typhoon Jebi – the strongest storm to hit the country in a quarter of a century.

Also Read: Japanese Major Canon Unveils its First Full-Frame Mirror less Camera

Typhoon Jebi killed at least 10 people and caused widespread destruction.